DPS is Violating Legislative Intent

-posted by Barbara Harless

The law states that individuals applying for original driver licenses, renewal drivers DPS fingerprint scannerlicenses, applicants applying for duplicate drivers licenses and personal identification certificates, must render thumbprints or index fingerprints (if a thumb is not available), along with an Image Verification System Photo (facial recognition photo).

The Texas DPS has been collecting full sets of 10 digit fingerprints, against legislative intent, since April that this blogger knows of.  Dave Lieber with the Dallas Morning News reports that all 10 digits were being collected as early as January 2014 (see DMN links below).

Here is the legislative history:

1967 HB 354 (60th Legislature) – Added thumbprints or index fingerprints (if a thumb was not available) requirement to application for original or renewal driver license
1995 SB 1252 (74th Legislature) – Extended thumbprints or index fingerprint requirement to application for duplicate driver license and personal identification certificate
2005 HB 2337 (79th Legislature) – Established the Image Verification System – requiring DPS to authenticate the facial image and thumbprints or fingerprint provided by an applicant”

DPS has been contacted by some Texas Legislators and yet they continue to collect prints of all 10 digits, against legislative intent.

The Texas Attorney General represents the DPS

Only the Attorney General can take action to stop the DPS immediately, without waiting for the Texas Legislature to convene and begin passing laws, which won’t be until over 60 days into the 84th session. That puts the earliest date that a bill can pass through both chambers in late March, but more likely April and even May of 2015. How many sets of fingerprints can DPS collect between now and then, against legislative intent? According to the AG’s website, the entity that can request immediate action on the part of the AG in this matter is “a committee of a house of the Texas Legislature”.

Of the three bills addressing the collection of thumbprints (listed above) and the legislators that served on any of the committees that heard testimony and passed bills out of committee, there are only seven (7) members still serving in the House or the Senate. Representative Garnet Coleman (Houston) was the “House sponsor” for SB 1252 in 1995. DPS is violating his legislative intent! He should be outraged and he should be contacting Attorney General Greg Abbott now.

This blogger placed a phone call to all seven (7) legislators that are still in office and also sat on one of the committees that heard and voted on one of the bills referenced above. In the meantime, it would be advisable if all Texas residents contacted their legislators (both House and Senate) and request that they act on this matter. Where does your legislator stand?

If you live in any of these districts of legislators that were involved in a committee that passed any of the 3 bills in question, please phone the legislator:

1995:  SB 1252 (74R)
Bill Sponsor: Representative Garnet Coleman -Houston (713) 520-5355 / (512) 463-0524

Senate committee on State Affairs:
Sen. John Carona -Dallas (214) 378-5751 / (512) 463-0116
Sen. Jane Nelson –Grapevine (817) 424-3446 / (512) 463-0112
Sen. Royce West –Dallas (214) 741-0123 or (214) 467-0123 / (512) 463-0123
Sen. John Whitmire –Houston (713) 864-8701 / (512) 463-0115

2005 HB 2337 (79R)
House cmttee on Defense Affairs & State-Federal Relations
Rep. Abel Herrero –Corpus Christi (361) 884-2277 / (512) 463-0462

Senate cmttee on Transportation & Homeland Security
**Cmttee Chair: Sen. John Carona –Dallas (214) 378-5751 / (512) 463-0116
Sen. Rodney Ellis –Houston (713) 236-0306 or (713) 776-2228 or Missouri City: (281) 261-2360 / (512) 463-0113

If you call your legislator, you can use this script:

“I want Representative _ _ _ _ and Senator _ _ _ to contact the Texas Attorney General immediately and demand that the Attorney General issue an order to the Department of Public Safety to promptly cease collection of all 10 fingerprints from persons applying for new driver licenses, renewal driver licenses, and I.D. cards, at least until the 84th Texas Legislature convenes and can address this issue through statute.
The Texas Department of Public Safety is violating Texas law. They are collecting full sets of fingerprints – all 10 digits – against legislative intent of the following Texas bills passed:…

1967 HB 354 (60th Legislature) – Added thumbprints or index fingerprints (if a thumb was not available) requirement to application for original or renewal driver license
1995 SB 1252 (74th Legislature) – Extended thumbprints or index fingerprint requirement to application for duplicate driver license and personal identification certificate
2005 HB 2337 (79th Legislature) – Established the Image Verification System – requiring DPS to authenticate the facial image and thumbprints or fingerprint provided by an applicant”

These bills specifically order the DPS to collect thumbprints only and the index finger when a thumbprint is not available; NOT all 10 digits.

Here’s the Texas Administrative Code where DPS tried to over-ride Texas statute:

PART 1 TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY
CHAPTER 15 DRIVER LICENSE RULES
RULE §15.45 Fingerprints
An application for original, renewal, or duplicate driver license or personal identification certificate must include the fingerprints of the applicant. This section does not apply to an applicant who is permitted and utilizes an alternative method for renewing or duplicating a driver license or identification certificate.
…amended to be effective July 6, 2014, 39 TexReg 5191

To find this part of the Code:
http://info.sos.state.tx.us/pls/pub/readtac$ext.viewtac
TITLE 37 (PUBLIC SAFETY & CORRECTIONS)
PART I (TEXAS DEPT. PUBLIC SAFETY)
CHAPTER 15 (D.L. RULES)
SUB CHAPTER B (APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS)
RULE 15.45 (FINGERPRINTS)

UPDATE:
Do you remember a bill that passed last year (HB 698)? Some of us lobbied against it, but most of the sheeple thought it was a good idea. The bill expanded the collection of digital fingerprints by DPS for CHL applicants. Now everyone can submit digital fingerprints within 25 miles of their home. The “fiscal impact” statement says …

“No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated. It is assumed the costs of implementing the provisions of the bill could be absorbed within existing resources.”

You know what that means – the feds are supplying the equipment through grants.

This blogger will never ask permission to defend herself.  CHLs are for one purpose – the collection of arms when the government decides to do so.  We’ve got to wake up!

We are beginning to see how powerful the DPS is, and it’s alarming.

To read three Dallas Morning News articles with more info:

Watchdog: Driver’s license centers snatch your fingerprints
June 7, 2014

The Watchdog: Texas DPS no longer trying its hand at fingerprint processing
July 27, 2014

Texas DPS whistleblower insists officials aren’t being candid
August 2, 2014

“We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion: the stage where government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may only act by permission.” (Ayn Rand)

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