HB1700: Motor Vehicles, Department of; data privacy, facial recognition technology.

HOUSE BILL NO. 1700

Offered January 17, 2020
A BILL to amend and reenact §§ 46.2-208 and 46.2-328.1 of the Code of Virginia, relating to Department of Motor Vehicles data privacy, and to limit the use of Department of Motor Vehicles information for facial recognition purposes.
Patron-- Tran

Committee Referral Pending

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That §§ 46.2-208 and 46.2-328.1 of the Code of Virginia are amended and reenacted as follows:

§ 46.2-208. Records of Department; when open for inspection; release of privileged information.

A. All records in the office of the Department containing the specific classes of information outlined below shall be considered privileged records:

1. Personal information, including all data defined as "personal information" in § 2.2-3801;

2. Driver information, including all data that relates to driver's license status and driver activity; and

3. Vehicle information, including all descriptive vehicle data and title, registration, and vehicle activity data.

B. The Commissioner shall release such information only under the following conditions:

1. Notwithstanding other provisions of this section, medical data included in personal data shall be released only to a physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner as provided in § 46.2-322.

2. Insurance data may be released as specified in §§ 46.2-372, 46.2-380, and 46.2-706.

3. Notwithstanding other provisions of this section, information disclosed or furnished shall be assessed a fee as specified in § 46.2-214.

4. When the person requesting the information is (i) the subject of the information, (ii) the parent or guardian of the subject of the information, (iii) the authorized representative of the subject of the information, or (iv) the owner of the vehicle that is the subject of the information, the Commissioner shall provide him with the requested information and a complete explanation of it. Requests for such information need not be made in writing or in person and may be made orally or by telephone, provided that the Department is satisfied that there is adequate verification of the requester's identity. When so requested in writing by (a) the subject of the information, (b) the parent or guardian of the subject of the information, (c) the authorized representative of the subject of the information, or (d) the owner of the vehicle that is the subject of the information, the Commissioner shall verify and, if necessary, correct the personal information provided and furnish driver and vehicle information in the form of an abstract of the record.

5. On the written request of any insurance carrier, surety, or representative of an insurance carrier or surety, the Commissioner shall furnish such insurance carrier, surety, or representative an abstract of the record of any person subject to the provisions of this title. The abstract shall include any record of any conviction of a violation of any provision of any statute or ordinance relating to the operation or ownership of a motor vehicle or of any injury or damage in which he was involved and a report of which is required by § 46.2-372. No such report of any conviction or accident shall be made after 60 months from the date of the conviction or accident unless the Commissioner or court used the conviction or accident as a reason for the suspension or revocation of a driver's license or driving privilege, in which case the revocation or suspension and any conviction or accident pertaining thereto shall not be reported after 60 months from the date that the driver's license or driving privilege has been reinstated. This abstract shall not be admissible in evidence in any court proceedings.

6. On the written request of any business organization or its agent, in the conduct of its business, the Commissioner shall compare personal information supplied by the business organization or agent with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by the business organization or agent is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the business organization or agent with correct information as contained in the Department's records. Personal information provided under this subdivision shall be used solely for the purpose of pursuing remedies that require locating an individual.

7. The Commissioner shall provide vehicle information to any business organization or agent on such business' or agent's written request. Disclosures made under this subdivision shall not include any personal information and shall not be subject to the limitations contained in subdivision 6.

8. On the written request of any motor vehicle rental or leasing company or its designated agent, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by the company or agent with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by the company or agent is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the company or agent with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide the company or agent with driver information in the form of an abstract of any person subject to the provisions of this title. Such abstract shall include any record of any conviction of a violation of any provision of any statute or ordinance relating to the operation or ownership of a motor vehicle or of any injury or damage in which the subject of the abstract was involved and a report of which is required by § 46.2-372. No such abstract shall include any record of any conviction or accident more than 60 months after the date of such conviction or accident unless the Commissioner or court used the conviction or accident as a reason for the suspension or revocation of a driver's license or driving privilege, in which case the revocation or suspension and any conviction or accident pertaining thereto shall cease to be included in such abstract after 60 months from the date on which the driver's license or driving privilege was reinstated. No abstract released under this subdivision shall be admissible in evidence in any court proceedings.

9. On the request of any federal, state, or local governmental entity, local government group self-insurance pool, law-enforcement officer, attorney for the Commonwealth, court, or the authorized agent of any of the foregoing, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by the governmental entity, local government group self-insurance pool, law-enforcement officer, attorney for the Commonwealth, court, or the authorized agent of any of the foregoing, with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by the governmental entity, local government group self-insurance pool, law-enforcement officer, attorney for the Commonwealth, court, or the authorized agent of any of the foregoing, is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the governmental entity, local government group self-insurance pool, law-enforcement officer, attorney for the Commonwealth, court, or the authorized agent of any of the foregoing, with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver and vehicle information in the form of an abstract of the record showing all convictions, accidents, and driver's license suspensions or revocations. The Commissioner may also release other appropriate information as the governmental entity, local government group self-insurance pool, law-enforcement officer, attorney for the Commonwealth, court, or the authorized agent of any of the foregoing, may require in order to carry out its official functions. The abstract shall be provided free of charge. Nothing in this subdivision shall authorize a disclosure of information otherwise prohibited pursuant to subdivision 34.

10. On request of the driver licensing authority in any other state or foreign country, the Commissioner shall provide whatever classes of information the requesting authority shall require in order to carry out its official functions. The information shall be provided free of charge.

11. On the written request of any employer, prospective employer, or authorized agent of either, and with the written consent of the individual concerned, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by the employer, prospective employer, or agent with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by the employer, prospective employer, or agent is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the employer, prospective employer, or agent with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide the employer, prospective employer, or agent with driver information in the form of an abstract of an individual's record showing all convictions, accidents, driver's license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses, provided that the individual's position or the position that the individual is being considered for involves the operation of a motor vehicle.

12. On the written request of any member of or applicant for membership in a volunteer fire company or any volunteer emergency medical services personnel or applicant to serve as volunteer emergency medical services personnel, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by the volunteer fire company or volunteer emergency medical services agency with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by the volunteer fire company or volunteer emergency medical services agency is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the volunteer fire company or volunteer emergency medical services agency with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver information in the form of an abstract of the member's, personnel, or applicant's record showing all convictions, accidents, license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses. Such abstract shall be provided free of charge if the request is accompanied by appropriate written evidence that the person is a member of or applicant for membership in a volunteer fire company or a volunteer emergency medical services agency to serve as a member of a volunteer emergency medical services agency and the abstract is needed by a volunteer fire company or volunteer emergency medical services agency to establish the qualifications of the member, volunteer, or applicant to operate equipment owned by the volunteer fire company or volunteer emergency medical services agency.

13. On the written request of any person who has applied to be a volunteer with a Virginia affiliate of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of America, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by a Virginia affiliate of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of America with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by a Virginia affiliate of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of America is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the Virginia affiliate of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of America with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver information in the form of an abstract of the applicant's record showing all convictions, accidents, license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses. Such abstract shall be provided at a fee that is one-half the normal charge if the request is accompanied by appropriate written evidence that the person has applied to be a volunteer with a Virginia affiliate of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of America.

14. On the written request of any person who has applied to be a volunteer with a court-appointed special advocate program pursuant to § 9.1-153, the Commissioner shall provide an abstract of the applicant's record showing all convictions, accidents, license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses. Such abstract shall be provided free of charge if the request is accompanied by appropriate written evidence that the person has applied to be a volunteer with a court-appointed special advocate program pursuant to § 9.1-153.

15. Upon the request of any employer, prospective employer, or authorized representative of either, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by the employer, prospective employer, or agent with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by the employer, prospective employer, or agent is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the employer, prospective employer, or agent with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver information in the form of an abstract of the driving record of any individual who has been issued a commercial driver's license, provided that the individual's position or the position that the individual is being considered for involves the operation of a commercial motor vehicle. Such abstract shall show all convictions, accidents, license suspensions, revocations, or disqualifications, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses.

16. Upon the receipt of a completed application and payment of applicable processing fees, the Commissioner may enter into an agreement with any governmental authority or business to exchange information specified in this section by electronic or other means.

17. Upon the request of an attorney representing a person in a motor vehicle accident, the Commissioner shall provide vehicle information, including the owner's name and address, to the attorney.

18. Upon the request, in the course of business, of any authorized representative of an insurance company or of any not-for-profit entity organized to prevent and detect insurance fraud, or perform rating and underwriting activities, the Commissioner shall provide to such person (i) all vehicle information, including the owner's name and address, descriptive data and title, registration, and vehicle activity data as requested or (ii) all driver information including name, license number and classification, date of birth, and address information for each driver under the age of 22 licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia meeting the request criteria designated by such person, with such request criteria consisting of driver's license number or address information. No such information shall be used for solicitation of sales, marketing, or other commercial purposes.

19. Upon the request of an officer authorized to issue criminal warrants, for the purpose of issuing a warrant for arrest for unlawful disposal of trash or refuse in violation of § 33.2-802 the Commissioner shall provide vehicle information, including the owner's name and address.

20. Upon written request of the compliance agent of a private security services business, as defined in § 9.1-138, which is licensed by the Department of Criminal Justice Services, the Commissioner shall provide the name and address of the owner of the vehicle under procedures determined by the Commissioner.

21. Upon the request of the operator of a toll facility or traffic light photo-monitoring system acting on behalf of a government entity, or of the Dulles Access Highway, or an authorized agent or employee of a toll facility operator or traffic light photo-monitoring system operator acting on behalf of a government entity or the Dulles Access Highway, for the purpose of obtaining vehicle owner data under subsection M of § 46.2-819.1 or subsection H of § 15.2-968.1 or subsection N of § 46.2-819.5. Information released pursuant to this subdivision shall be limited to the name and address of the owner of the vehicle having failed to pay a toll or having failed to comply with a traffic light signal or having improperly used the Dulles Access Highway and the vehicle information, including all descriptive vehicle data and title and registration data of the same vehicle.

22. On the written request of any person who has applied to be a volunteer with a Virginia affiliate of Compeer, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by a Virginia affiliate of Compeer with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by a Virginia affiliate of Compeer is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the Virginia affiliate of Compeer with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver information in the form of an abstract of the applicant's record showing all convictions, accidents, license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses. Such abstract shall be provided at a fee that is one-half the normal charge if the request is accompanied by appropriate written evidence that the person has applied to be a volunteer with a Virginia affiliate of Compeer.

23. Upon the request of the Department of Environmental Quality for the purpose of obtaining vehicle owner data in connection with enforcement actions involving on-road testing of motor vehicles, pursuant to § 46.2-1178.1.

24. On the written request of any person who has applied to be a volunteer vehicle operator with a Virginia chapter of the American Red Cross, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by a Virginia chapter of the American Red Cross with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by a Virginia chapter of the American Red Cross is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the Virginia chapter of the American Red Cross with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver information in the form of an abstract of the applicant's record showing all convictions, accidents, license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses. Such abstract shall be provided at a fee that is one-half the normal charge if the request is accompanied by appropriate written evidence that the person has applied to be a volunteer vehicle operator with a Virginia chapter of the American Red Cross.

25. On the written request of any person who has applied to be a volunteer vehicle operator with a Virginia chapter of the Civil Air Patrol, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by a Virginia chapter of the Civil Air Patrol with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by a Virginia chapter of the Civil Air Patrol is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide the Virginia chapter of the Civil Air Patrol with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver information in the form of an abstract of the applicant's record showing all convictions, accidents, license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses. Such abstract shall be provided at a fee that is one-half the normal charge if the request is accompanied by appropriate written evidence that the person has applied to be a volunteer vehicle operator with a Virginia chapter of the Civil Air Patrol.

26. On the written request of any person who has applied to be a volunteer vehicle operator with Faith in Action, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by Faith in Action with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by Faith in Action is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide Faith in Action with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver information in the form of an abstract of the applicant's record showing all convictions, accidents, license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses. Such abstract shall be provided at a fee that is one-half the normal charge if the request is accompanied by appropriate written evidence that the person has applied to be a volunteer vehicle operator with Faith in Action.

27. On the written request of the surviving spouse or child of a deceased person or the executor or administrator of a deceased person's estate, the Department shall, if the deceased person had been issued a driver's license or special identification card by the Department, supply the requestor with a hard copy image of any photograph of the deceased person kept in the Department's records.

28. On the written request of any person who has applied to be a volunteer with a Virginia Council of the Girl Scouts of the USA, the Commissioner shall (i) compare personal information supplied by a Virginia Council of the Girl Scouts of the USA with that contained in the Department's records and, when the information supplied by a Virginia Council of the Girl Scouts of the USA is different from that contained in the Department's records, provide a Virginia Council of the Girl Scouts of the USA with correct information as contained in the Department's records and (ii) provide driver information in the form of an abstract of the applicant's record showing all convictions, accidents, license suspensions or revocations, and any type of driver's license that the individual currently possesses. Such abstract shall be provided at a fee that is one-half the normal charge if the request is accompanied by appropriate written evidence that the person has applied to be a volunteer with the Virginia Council of the Girl Scouts of the USA.

29. Upon written agreement, the Commissioner may digitally verify the authenticity and validity of a driver's license, learner's permit, or special identification card to the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, a motor vehicle dealer as defined in § 46.2-1500, or other organization approved by the Commissioner.

30. Upon the request of the operator of a video-monitoring system as defined in § 46.2-844 acting on behalf of a government entity, the Commissioner shall provide vehicle owner data pursuant to subsection B of § 46.2-844. Information released pursuant to this subdivision shall be limited to the name and address of the owner of the vehicle having passed a stopped school bus and the vehicle information, including all descriptive vehicle data and title and registration data for such vehicle.

31. The Department shall not release the photograph of an individual or image of the signature of an individual unless such release is to a law-enforcement officer pursuant to subdivision 9 and such officer provides the name of the individual and other sufficient identifying information regarding such individual. Notwithstanding the provisions of this subdivision, upon request the Department shall provide the image of an individual's signature to the Board of Elections, provided that such images shall only be used for election integrity purposes, shall not be shared with any other entity, and shall not be subject to disclosure under the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.).

32. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section other than subdivision 33, the Department shall not release, except upon the request by the subject of the information, the parent of a minor who is the subject of the information, the guardian of the subject of the information, or the authorized representative of the subject of the information or pursuant to a judicial warrant or court order, (i) proof documents submitted to the Department for the issuance of any driving credential or special identification card or any copy thereof, (ii) the information in the Department's record indicating the type of proof document that was provided, or (iii) applications related to the issuance of a driving credential or a special identification card. The Department shall not collect, gather, or otherwise retain the proof documents presented for the issuance of any driving credential or special identification card other than a REAL ID compliant driver's license. As used in this subdivision, "proof document" means any document not originally created by the Department submitted to the Department for the issuance of any driving credential or special identification card

33. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, the Department may release, with all available data security and confidentiality protections, the information in the Department's records it deems reasonable and necessary for the purpose of federal compliance audits.

34. The Department shall not provide, disclose, or otherwise provide access to any information to a federal agency that primarily enforces immigration law unless the federal agency serves the Commissioner or his designee with a valid subpoena, a judicial warrant issued by a federal or Virginia state court, or a court order entered by a judge appointed to a federal or Virginia state court requiring such disclosure. The Commissioner may challenge any such service or any warrant, order, or subpoena if he deems such to be overbroad, unreasonable, or otherwise outside of the scope of the agency's legal purpose. The Department shall comply with all requirements provided under state or federal law.

C. Whenever the Commissioner issues an order to suspend or revoke the driver's license or driving privilege of any individual, he may notify the National Driver Register Service operated by the United States Department of Transportation and any similar national driver information system and provide whatever classes of information the authority may require.

D. Accident reports may be inspected under the provisions of §§ 46.2-379 and 46.2-380.

E. Whenever the Commissioner takes any licensing action pursuant to the provisions of the Virginia Commercial Driver's License Act (§ 46.2-341.1 et seq.), he may provide information to the Commercial Driver License Information System, or any similar national commercial driver information system, regarding such action.

F. In addition to the foregoing provisions of this section, vehicle information may also be inspected under the provisions of §§ 46.2-633, 46.2-644.02, 46.2-644.03, and §§ 46.2-1200.1 through 46.2-1237.

G. The Department may promulgate regulations to govern the means by which personal, vehicle, and driver information is requested and disseminated.

H. Driving records of any person accused of an offense involving the operation of a motor vehicle shall be provided by the Commissioner upon request to any person acting as counsel for the accused. If such counsel is from the public defender's office or has been appointed by the court, such records shall be provided free of charge.

I. The Department shall maintain the records of persons convicted of violations of § 18.2-36.2, subsection B of § 29.1-738, and §§ 29.1-738.02, 29.1-738.2, and 29.1-738.4 which shall be forwarded by every general district court or circuit court or the clerk thereof, pursuant to § 46.2-383. Such records shall be electronically available to any law-enforcement officer as provided for under clause (ii) of subdivision B 9.

J. Whenever the Commissioner issues a certificate of title for a motor vehicle, he may notify the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System, or any other nationally recognized system providing similar information, or any entity contracted to collect information for such system, and may provide whatever classes of information are required by such system.

K. Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, the Department shall not provide, disclose, share, or otherwise provide access to any information to or enter into an information-sharing agreement with any data broker, information broker, information reseller, or for-profit corporation or any other entity that is in the business of aggregating, distributing, or selling such information. The provisions of this section shall not impact any information-sharing agreement entered into prior to July 1, 2020, provided that such agreement complies with federal law.

§ 46.2-328.1. Licenses, permits and special identification cards to be issued only to United States citizens, legal permanent resident aliens, or holders of valid unexpired nonimmigrant visas; exceptions; renewal, duplication, or reissuance.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of this title, except as provided in subsection G of § 46.2-345, the Department shall not issue an original license, permit, or special identification card to any applicant who has not presented to the Department, with the application, valid documentary evidence that the applicant is either (i) a citizen of the United States, (ii) a legal permanent resident of the United States, or (iii) a conditional resident alien of the United States.

B. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection A and the provisions of §§ 46.2-330 and 46.2-345, an applicant who presents in person valid documentary evidence of (i) a valid, unexpired nonimmigrant visa or nonimmigrant visa status for entry into the United States, (ii) a pending or approved application for asylum in the United States, (iii) entry into the United States in refugee status, (iv) a pending or approved application for temporary protected status in the United States, (v) approved deferred action status, or (vi) a pending application for adjustment of status to legal permanent residence status or conditional resident status, may be issued a temporary license, permit, or special identification card. Such temporary license, permit, or special identification card shall be valid only during the period of time of the applicant's authorized stay in the United States or if there is no definite end to the period of authorized stay a period of one year. No license, permit, or special identification card shall be issued if an applicant's authorized stay in the United States is less than 30 days from the date of application. Any temporary license, permit, or special identification card issued pursuant to this subsection shall clearly indicate that it is temporary and shall state the date that it expires. Such a temporary license, permit or identification card may be renewed only upon presentation of valid documentary evidence that the status by which the applicant qualified for the temporary license, permit or special identification has been extended by the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service or the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services of the Department of Homeland Security.

C. Any license or special identification card for which an application has been made for renewal, duplication or reissuance shall be presumed to have been issued in accordance with the provisions of subsection A, provided that, at the time the application is made, (i) the license or special identification card has not expired or been cancelled, suspended or revoked or (ii) the license or special identification card has been canceled or suspended as a result of the applicant having been placed under medical review by the Department pursuant to § 46.2-322. The requirements of subsection A shall apply, however, to a renewal, duplication or reissuance if the Department is notified by a local, state or federal government agency that the individual seeking such renewal, duplication or reissuance is neither a citizen of the United States nor legally in the United States.

D. The Department shall cancel any license, permit, or special identification card that it has issued to an individual if it is notified by a federal government agency that the individual is neither a citizen of the United States nor legally present in the United States.

E. For any applicant who presents a document pursuant to this section proving legal presence other than citizenship, the Department shall record and provide to the State Board of Elections monthly the applicant's document number, if any, issued by an agency or court of the United States government. The information provided pursuant to this subsection shall only be used to accomplish the official functions of the State Board of Elections. Any information recorded and provided pursuant to this subsection shall not be provided, disclosed, shared, or otherwise made accessible to any other entity and shall not be subject to disclosure under the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.).

2. § 1. The Department of Motor Vehicles (the Department) shall not authorize the release or use of any information stored by the Department for facial recognition purposes before July 1, 2022.

Notwithstanding the prohibition in this section, the Department shall authorize the release or use of information stored by the Department for facial recognition purposes before July 1, 2022, for the identification of victims of sex trafficking by any law-enforcement agency.

For the purposes of this section, "facial recognition" means an automated or semi-automated process that assists in identifying an individual or capturing information about an individual on the basis of the physical characteristics of an individual's face or that logs characteristics of an individual's face, head, or body to infer emotion, associations, activities, or the location of the individual.

3. That the Department of Motor Vehicles, in consultation with the Department of Criminal Justice Services, the Office of the Attorney General, and other relevant stakeholders, shall develop recommendations on using information maintained and stored by the Department of Motor Vehicles for facial recognition purposes and protecting the privacy of the residents of Virginia and shall report such recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly on or before November 1, 2021.

4. That the Department of State Police shall review the policies, procedures, regulations, and agreements governing the use of the Virginia Criminal Information Network (VCIN) to ensure that no local, state, or federal government entity, through VCIN, has access to information stored by the Department of Motor Vehicles in violation of the protections contained in the provisions of this act.