Starting today anyone who wishes to obtain a Texas driver's license must present proof that they have been residing in the State of Texas for at least 30 days. The 30-day requirement would be waived for anyone surrendering a valid out-of-state driver's license - but they would still have to show proof of residency.
The requirement of a 30-day residency is courtesy of a change to the Texas Administrative Code last April. The change is clearly intended to prevent immigrants from obtaining a Texas driver's license. As many immigrants move in with family members and friends they don't have insurance or utility bills in their names. As many immigrants operate in a cash economy, they don't have bank accounts.
The 30-day requirement only means that there will be more folks out on the roadways who will be breaking the law every time they get behind the wheel to drive to work. It seeks to deprive immigrants of the ability to obtain a valid picture ID.
Instead of creating a group of criminals by fiat, the state should be looking at ways to integrate folks into our society. Regardless of how you feel about illegal immigration, preventing newly arrived immigrants from obtaining a driver's license isn't going to solve any problems. It will just increase the number of people on our roads with a license or insurance.