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Charlotte Amalie
Sunday, May 19, 2024
HomeNewsLocal newsBMV to Begin Accepting Applications for Limited Purpose Driver’s License and Identification...

BMV to Begin Accepting Applications for Limited Purpose Driver’s License and Identification Cards

The town halls are to address concerns and provide clarity about the documents that must be presented to obtain a limited-purpose driver’s license. (Source photo by Diana Dias)

About 50 people attended a town hall meeting on Monday at David Canegata BallPark Multipurpose Center on St. Croix to address concerns and provide clarity about the documents that must be presented to obtain a limited-purpose driver’s license or a limited-purpose identification card.

The town halls are to address concerns and provide clarity about the documents that must be presented to obtain a limited-purpose driver’s license.

In order to qualify, applicants will need proof of residence in the U.S. Virgin Islands for the past six months and fill out an online application. Residents can access the limited-purpose driver’s license and the limited-purpose identification card application by clicking here.

Users can view the application in Spanish but must turn in the English version. The form also includes a list of required documentation.

Director Barbara Jackson-McIntosh said due to the expectancy of heavy lines and standing in the sun, the bureau has decided to accept applications on Saturdays beginning on May 25 until July 27.

“As we are trying to look how to make our community safer, we have individuals in our community that are driving without driver’s license and the reason why is not because they want to, but because the framework of the law impeded them to do so, and they are driving without being insured,” said Sen. Samuel Carrion.

Carrion, along with his colleagues Sens. Kenneth Gittens and Angel Bolques, were there to support the initiative. The governor and his administration supported the measure and collaborated with Carrion’s office, said Jackson-McIntosh.

The bill originated from Carrion’s office from his first term in office and after much research, deliberation, many drafts and amendments they were able to have a bill that passed and was signed into law by Bryan.

“As a public safety measure, we said what can we do to make our roads safer.  We realized in other jurisdictions that had implemented similar laws they realized the hit-and-run has decreased. Most of the individuals because they don’t have a license, and they are not insured, they leave the scene of an accident because of the consequences that it may bring,” Carrion said.

“As a matter of public safety, we thought it is important to ensure that residents within our community, regardless of their status, are identified.  It also bridges the gap because sometimes individuals that be on a different spectrum of their immigration status,” he continued.

Carrion also said that the V.I. government, for instance, the Education Department, brought teachers from the Philippines, Jamaica, Guyana, and the Dominican Republic. “They were brought in with a working visa to be here in the territory. In our research we realized that those individuals were having difficulty getting a driver’s license even though they are here legally through a work permit and were brought in by the government to do that type of work,” said Carrion.

Carrion encouraged individuals who do not drive to apply for an ID card for identification purposes.

Bolques also provided his thanks and commended community members for coming out.

“I’m very proud and thankful that each and every one of you are actually here with us and are not afraid to be here with us today. I know sometimes when people come from other countries, they may not have the right present paperwork. They are afraid to do any dealings with the government, but this law protects you, and this law is very important for the survival of your people here in the Virgin Islands because you have to take the children to school, you have to buy food and groceries.  You all provide a very important service to our community here in the Virgin Islands,” he said.

The V.I. Bureau of Motor Vehicles will continue holding the series of town hall meetings on St. Thomas, at the Taxi Association Conference Center located at number 68 Contant, on Saturday from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and St. John on Sunday at the Community Center in Cruz Bay, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

The purpose of the meetings is to engage constituents in an informative dialogue about the implementation and process of obtaining the new “Limited Purpose Driver’s License” and “Limited Purpose Identification Card.”

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  1. How does one manage to write an article such as this yet not manage to state just what a “limited purpose” license is supposed to cover? It skirted the issue by siting one legitimate example. Is it intended to embrace those living outside the law? How are people driving without a license? Whose cars are they driving? How do they buy and register a car without a valid ID? How does anyone expect this will increase drivers getting insurance? We have people driving cars with illegally tinted windows, broken headlights and taillights, no license plates, and riding in the back of pickups, yet no one seems to notice. How is issuing a license or ID going to enhance safety in any conceivable way? This article raises more questions than it answers.