New York City Strong news Albany, NY: Office of the Governor Dani Lever reports 2.13.2020.

“Governor Cuomo met with President Trump today to discuss the situation and the dire need to rectify it. Governor Cuomo restated the initial solution that he proposed to the DHS Acting Secretary last Thursday on our willingness to allow federal officials access to DMV records only for individuals applying to the Trusted Traveler Program.

“As the Governor previously said, we believe DHS’s action was politically motivated and unwarranted as the FBI already has information regarding criminal records and TTP applicants already go through an extensive federal background check. The President said that this is an issue he wants to work on and that he would follow up with the Governor next week.”   

Governor Cuomo Announces Intent to Sue Federal Government Following Department of Homeland Security’s Decision to Ban New Yorkers from Trusted Traveler Program February 7, 2020 – NYC, Governor Cuomo announced New York State’s intent to sue the federal government following the Department of Homeland Security’s decision to ban New Yorkers from the Trusted Traveler Program.

Statement from Communications Director Dani Lever Regarding New York’s Trusted Traveler Program 2.12.2020.

Communications Director Dani Lever issued the following statement regarding Governor Cuomo’s upcoming meeting with President Trump:

The Governor will be meeting with President Trump tomorrow afternoon to discuss the federal action to block New York from the Trusted Travel Program.  The relevant facts are as follows:

  • Last Wednesday the Department of Homeland Security Acting Secretary said on Fox News that they would block New York from using the Global Entry Programs.  At close of business that day New York State received a letter saying that New York would be blocked from the TTP program because they would not grant access to the DMV database.
  • Last Thursday the Governor spoke to the Acting Secretary and said that DHS already had all New York State information on criminal backgrounds through the FBI and that, while redundant and unnecessary, the DMV could provide data specifically for TTP enrollee applicant cases.  DHS rejected the offer.
  • This past Monday the Department of Justice announced various actions against different states which allow undocumented drivers.  Later that day the news organization BuzzFeed printed a memo from DHS listing different ways to “punish” states that allowed undocumented drivers. 

The Governor believes that, as the TTP program is administered by DHS with in-person interviews and an exhaustive federal background check process, the state’s database is irrelevant and DHS’s request is unnecessary.  In any event, DHS stated governmental needs can be met by the State which can provide DMV data for TTP enrollee cases.  With all logical governmental rationales extinguished, the TTP blockage is clearly politically motivated, an abuse of government power, and illegal.