Tuesday, November 6, 2018

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Middletown council approves municipal ID cards

DeStefano: made a final pitch before the unanimous vote

MIDDLETOWN – In a unanimous vote, the Middletown Common Council Monday night approved the creation of municipal identification cards for all city residents.

Prior to the council vote, Mayor Joseph DeStefano emphasized the ID card would not be “official” in the sense where people are required to use it. It facilitates access to community services. The City of Middletown will accept the card for identification purposes, he said.

DeStefano said with national immigration debate “hitting new lows,” the ID card will help undocumented residents of Middletown.

“They, the applicants of these cards, understand there are risks, but they can also be reassured – and I think we made that very clear at one of the previous meetings – that myself and this city government will utilize the courts to protect this information as much as possible,” said.

Drafting the program was spearheaded by DeStefano and Alderman Gerry Kleiner. The alderman said he hopes the program will enhance public safety.

Several organizations including Nobody Leaves Mid-Hudson and the regional chapter of the New York Civil Liberties Union, lobbied for the program.

The City of Poughkeepsie adopted a municipal ID program in July and the City of Kingston is expected to adopt the same law in December.

The Middletown municipal IDs are expected to be available starting on February 1, 2019.


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