Wednesday, October 3, 2018

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Kingston likely to adopt municipal ID program

KINGSTON – The Kingston Common Council passed a memorializing resolution Tuesday evening supporting a municipal ID program for city residents.

The resolution solidifies the city’s commitment to helping undocumented residents secure a means of identification that will allow them to deal with authorities more effectively, use public services and feel more dignified as members of the community.

Although the DMV and passports given to undocumented residents are available, it can be a cumbersome and costly process. The municipal IDs would allow residents a more affordable means of acquiring legitimate identification.

Kingston Coordinator for Nobody Leaves Mid-Hudson, Diana Lopez, said she is glad to see the common council and residents show so much support for the resolution.

“I am very happy and excited,” said Lopez. “I am also very happy for the support that we are receiving for it, but we will still continue to come to every meeting possible and make it put to vote.”

A memorializing resolution holds no legislative ground, but according to Kingston Alderman Reynolds Scott-Childress, that was intentional.

Scott-Childress said that they wanted to introduce the idea to the public, get their input and afford them adequate time before bringing the municipal ID program to local legislation.

“It makes some people in the community much more comfortable with approaching the police and when that happens we create a better community relationship with police,” Scott-Childress said. “One of things we are trying to do is make life easier for the police so that when they have to investigate crimes, they are not having to deal with ancillary issues of concern from different populations that might not talk to the police.”

Scott-Childress said the issue has been discussed in committee before and will continue discussion in the Laws and Rules Committee.

If that committee approves it at its next session, it will go before the full common council with an additional public hearing before a final vote.

 


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