I’m a little concerned about LB 28, which will be on General File on Monday, Febr. 2. Here is the “statement of intent” of this bill, introduced by Sen. Pahls:
LB 28 authorizes the Director of the Department of Motor Vehicles to issue undercover
license plates and drivers’ licenses to federal law enforcement agencies, when used
only for legitimate criminal investigatory purposes.The federal law enforcement agency shall designate a contact person and submit an
application on a form prescribed by the director. Prior to issuing the plates or licenses,
the director shall determine whether they will be used for a legitimate purpose. The
records regarding the application and issuance shall be kept confidential. The plates
and licenses shall be returned to the director upon completion of their purpose or upon
the director’s request. All fees normally required for a plate or license must accompany
My concern for this bill is that it seems–on its face–to make it even easier for federal law enforcement officials to conduct investigations (or arrests) which may or may not be “legitimate” (in reality, if the feds come to the Director of the Department Motor Vehicles and says “this is a legitimate need”, do we really think the Director will question the FBI, DEA, INS, or whoever else it might be?).
Recommendation: encourage your legislators to think carefully about the potential impact on liberty–and the potential for letting federal agencies have too much power–before voting for this legislation.