Grisanti drops opposition to licenses

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A day after sharp criticism by the Cuomo administration, a state senator is retracting his opposition to the tentative selection of the highest bidder to produce new, more secure driver's licenses that will carry only black-and-white photos.

State Sen. Mark Grisanti of Erie County says he understands the administration's goal for security in choosing the Canadian company after meeting with Cuomo officials. Grisanti had given WIVB an interview expressing his opposition.

The Cuomo administration had said Grisanti and another senator apparently would prefer to choose the lowest bidder who offers a card the administration feels could be altered by a terrorist.

Meanwhile, Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi has urged the state comptroller to put a hold on the contract award until it's more carefully analyzed.

Grisanti's office released this statement:

"After talking with the Governors office we received information that these licenses are being done under Federal Homeland security measures because of the fraud and manipulation of our current drivers licenses. As for the other bidders to this contract, there is legal action being taken and a court will have to decide whether or not the bidding process was done correctly. It is not up to the State Legislature if the bid process was done correctly, that is up to the courts.

One of the main goals of Senator Grisanti being the first lawmaker in the state to object to this overall process is to bring attention to the fact that NO New York Companies were involved in the bidding process. Senator Grisanti's office and the Governor's office are now working on a mechanism to ensure in the future that New York businesses are made aware of these contracts, and future contracts put out to bid by the State of New York so that they can compete for these kinds of contracts to keep jobs here in Western New York."

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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New York (change)

Democrat Andrew Cuomo is Governor of New York.  Two Democrats represent NYS in the U.S. Senate, and NY has 29 representatives in the U.S. House: 21 Democrats and 8 Republicans.
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