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Migrants in Puerto Rico await driver's licenses

  • June 14, 2013 - 2:20 PM

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — The government of Puerto Rico is poised to approve a bill that would allow immigrants living in the U.S. territory illegally to obtain a temporary driver's license.

The island's House of Representatives approved the bill 29-18 this week, and the Senate and governor are expected to approve the measure in upcoming weeks. The law would go into effect one year after it is approved.

Among those who voted for the bill is Rep. Javier Aponte Dalmau. He said in a phone interview Friday that it would provide more opportunities to those living on the island illegally.

The measure is already being celebrated by an estimated more than 150,000 immigrants from the Dominican Republic who live in Puerto Rico, along with thousands of other migrants from the Caribbean, including Haitians.

© 2014 Star Tribune