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Tuesday, February 16, 2016

 5:31 PM 

Senate approves limits on local ID cards

The Senate approved 19-13 along party lines placing new limits on the ID cards issued by local governments.

The original bill would have banned towns and counties from issuing or spending money on the photo ID cards, except those used for government employment. It would allow cities and villages to issue the cards because of the state's home rule. 

Under an amendment to SB 533, counties have more options to issue the cards. But the IDs issued by cities, counties and villages could not be used for voting, registering to vote or obtaining public benefits, such as the state's Medicaid program.

Dems slammed the bill as yet another encroachment on local control, questioning why it was necessary. They also suggested Republicans were looking to prevent local communities from doing things like issuing ID cards that could be used at a local funded pool. 

Sen. Tim Carpenter, D-Milwaukee, also suggested the bill was targeted at immigrants and fit with calls from GOP presidential candidates to build a wall with Mexico.

"You want to do everything you can to keep them in the shadows," Carpenter said.

But Sen. Van Wanggaard, R-Racine, said Dems were relying on an old version of the bill for their criticism. The changes would allow local governments to issue ID cards, but would make sure they weren't used for voting and ensuring the integrity of the state's voter ID requirement.

 


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