Bizzarro’s legislation to connect homeless youth with driver’s licenses advances in House

H.B 127 approved by House Transportation committee, heads to House floor

HARRISBURG, June 10 – Legislation that will make it easier for youth experiencing homelessness to obtain a driver’s license is gaining traction in Harrisburg, state Rep. Ryan Bizzarro (D-Erie), the bill’s sponsor, said Monday.

The House Transportation Committee unanimously approved Bizzarro’s H.B. 127 Monday afternoon. This bill would waive the fees associated with acquiring a driver’s license for vulnerable youth who don’t have a secure residence. With a license, these youth will be able to enroll or transfer schools, access social services like food and housing assistance, and attend medical visits.

“The Pennsylvania Department of Education recently reported more than 40,000 youth had been identified as homeless, and they often go unseen. By removing the monetary barrier associated with attaining a license, we’re increasing their access to life-saving services and programs they wouldn’t necessarily have available,” said Bizzarro. “This is sensible, compassionate legislation that will help keep students connected with their schools and communities while their lives stabilize.”

Under this legislation, license fees will be waived for youth identified as homeless by a state agency, but the child must be enrolled in an education program to receive the waived fee. Youth acquiring a license would be able to use a shelter or school address as a temporary address.

House Bill 127 now advances for consideration from the full House.