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More Progress Toward Secure, Free-Flowing Border

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More Progress Toward Secure, Free-Flowing Border

Office of the Premier

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty today commended New York State Governor Eliot Spitzer for his announcement that New York will develop an enhanced driver's licence to allow Upstate New Yorkers to cross the New York-Canada border without a passport.

Under the US Department of Homeland Security's Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, travelers entering the US from Canada would be required to carry a passport as soon as next summer. Earlier this year, the Ontario government announced that it was creating a high-security driver's licence with the goal of it also being accepted by the US government for cross-border travel purposes.

McGuinty said, "I want to thank Governor Spitzer for taking a leadership role in developing a high-security driver's licence that can serve as an alternative to a passport when New Yorkers cross the border. New York is a key trading partner for Ontario, but we are more than just neighbours -- we're good friends. And together, we can develop new high-security driver's licences that will be a workable solution for families, businesses and governments, one that increases security and protects cross-border trade and tourism."

Spitzer said, "Upstate New Yorkers have had a long and close relationship with the people of Ontario. My plan to provide an enhanced driver's licence recognizes the significance of this friendship, and will ensure that cross-border travel and commerce with Ontario continues to flourish. Premier McGuinty is working hard to have Ontario's new driver's licence be an acceptable alternative to a passport, and I look forward to working with him to advance smart and secure New York-Ontario border policies."

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