Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation Thursday that grants drivers licenses to undocumented immigrants, while a number of gun control measures are pending approval.
The driving permits will be available starting in 2015. Legislative analysis predicts that 1.4 million undocumented immigrants will apply for the license.
Legal driving privilege is the latest in a number of victories for illegal immigrants in California. A 2011 law gave them the right to apply for public financial aid for college. Another gave driving permits to undocumented workers permitted under federal law.
Brown held off signing the licensing legislation for years, saying it was a patchwork solution to the larger problem of immigration law, which he’d hoped Congress would tackle. That didn’t happen, clearly, so he opted to sign Assembly Bill 60, authored by Assemblyman Luis Alejo (D-Watsonville). AB 60 requires the license carry a mark distinguishing it from a regular one.
Decisions on 14 prospective gun laws should come any day now. Gun rights advocates on Thursday dropped off 67,000 letters at the Capitol asking Brown to veto the legislation.
“California already has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation and these 14 measures are particularly onerous,” legislative advocate for the California Association of Federal Firearms Licensees Craig DeLuz said to the Sac Bee.
Senate Bill 374, introduced by Sen. Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento), prohibits detachable magazines in rifles. Assembly Bill 711, penned by Rep. Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood), bans lead ammunition. These, among other bills, were written in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre.
Brown has until Oct. 13 to sign the bills. The NRA has threatened to sue if he passes some of them.