85,000 in U.S. illegally get Illinois driver's licenses in 1st year of program

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More than 85,000 immigrants living in the United States illegally now have Illinois driver’s licenses after the first full year that a new state program has been in place.

The $30 licenses are valid for three years and may be used only for driving — and not as identification for boarding a plane, voting or buying a firearm.

Illinois Secretary of State spokesman Henry Haupt says nearly 190,000 people have scheduled appointments since the program began in late 2013.

Supporters say the law saves Illinois motorists money and make roads safer. Critics say the state should be cracking down on immigrants who entered the country illegally.

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