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L.A. might use library cards as form of I.D.

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L.A. might use library cards as form of I.D.

L.A. (BDCi) – An estimated 300,000 Los Angeles residents are without a bank account or debit card.

Some 70% of those people make $10-15,000 annually, were born outside of the country and have been here for an average of 14 years.

Immigrants that do not go to the bank are susceptible to overpaying payday lenders  or being robbed with large amounts of cash on them.

So the City Council has unanimously voted to consider Councilman Richard Alarcon’s proposal to convert library cards into a form of identification, which could also be used to open bank accounts.

The card, to be issued through city libraries, would contain the person’s name, address and photo.

Private vendors would partner with the city and set up bank accounts for the card holders; banks usually require official I.D.

Direct deposit as well as international and domestic money transfers would also be offered.

There would be a pay fee from $15 to $20 and a possible monthly fee of no more than $2.99.

Communications director of the Federation for American Immigration Reform Ira Mehlman believes the cards can be exploited by terrorists and criminals and that they encourage illegal immigration.

San Francisco, Richmond and Oakland have adopted similar plans.

Anyone who can prove they are a resident of L.A. is eligible.

The cards are not a substitute for a license.

By: Diego Díaz

Source: L.A. Times

Photo: Google

12 September 2012

10:30 a.m. P.D.T.

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