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Thread: Valid driver's license

  1. #1

    Valid driver's license

    I have a question for everyone. I have been job searching and it surprises me to see how many jobs require a valid driver's license. I could see if you were applying for a job that might require travel, but more the most part a planner doesn't do much traveling. How do people feel about the need for a Valid Driver's License to apply for a job?

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Bubba's avatar
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    Fairly standard, in my mind. Covers the employer if they ever need to send you anywhere outside the office for any reason.
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  3. #3
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    No WAY

    Totally unreasonable for the Pedestrian/Bicycle Planner in my opinion

    Now a Transportation Planner should be taking the bus everywhere in an urban environment and as such wouldn't need a license. So maybe a requirement for a bus pass would be appropriate

    Everyone else should have a Drivers License
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  4. #4
    Cyburbian Plus PlannerGirl's avatar
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    Planners frequently make "field trips" out into their areas to look at properties, hold on site meetings etc. Many times the planner is driving a city/county car so it seems very reasonable to expect that person to have a DL. This also is a security feature I think as some will use that to check your driving record, the last thing the boss wants is a guy with 3 DUIs driving the city truck and have an accident.
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." Ben Franklin

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  5. #5

    on the fence

    I agree with it being fairly standard and maybe it covers an employer for various reasons, but I have a hard time justifying this when planners are being educated on the "evils" of an auto dependant society. To me, this excludes people because they may not be "priviledged enough" to have a driver's license. Some people simply don't care to drive. I can see if you want to do a background check, but you can get one without a license. So I don't know, just doesn't seem reasonable to me.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    Well....

    The only reason NOT to have a drivers licence is to be "counter" culture I think (unless you have a severe disability or are in the hospital). How priviledged do you have to be, just to have a license? Not very....they cost about $25 and you pass a test. What does it hurt to have a drivers license but rarely or never use it? It doesn't hurt anyone or anything, it just means you have to use a passport to fly anywhere within the US. (I wonder if they take State ID cards at the airports?)

    Does anyone have a reliable count of adults eligible to drive that choose not to have a drivers license? Does the Census ask that question?
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  7. #7
    Cyburbian Plus
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    Quote Originally posted by The One View post
    Does anyone have a reliable count of adults eligible to drive that choose not to have a drivers license? Does the Census ask that question?
    No they don't.
    Last edited by JNA; 22 Aug 2007 at 5:55 PM.
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  8. #8
    Quote Originally posted by The One View post
    (I wonder if they take State ID cards at the airports?)
    Current government-issued photo identification. My dad used his 30 year old Pennsylvania liquor ID once, and it worked, because it was government issued and had no expiration date. (Still, I wouldn't push my luck using my county government employee ID, etc.)

    As to a DL, even my GIS Tech job required one. Why? We go to training, meetings, etc.

  9. #9
    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    It's also good to require a DL in the event you have a marginal employee, doing just enough to get by, who picks up a DUI along the way, giving you cause to show them the door because they don't meet MQs for employment.... Trust me.
    I don't do anything right.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian wahday's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by The One View post
    (I wonder if they take State ID cards at the airports?)
    They do. There are lots of people who don't have drivers licenses because of various reasons: They are legally blind, they have epilepsy, their license has been revoked (Alzheimer's, drunk driving), etc. Still, they need official ID to fly and, in some cases, to purchase an interstate train ticket (I don't know if this is still in effect, but a friend taking Amtrak from New Mexico to Chicago had to show ID to purchase the ticket). And alcohol! let's not forget about that need...

    Sure, you can get a passport, but a state ID is usually cheaper and easier to get. That's partly why they offer them in the first place (and you still have to show proof of identity to get it - usually birth certificate and social security card)

    Quote Originally posted by The One View post
    Does anyone have a reliable count of adults eligible to drive that choose not to have a drivers license? Does the Census ask that question?
    Some states have wrestled with a growing number of undocumented residents that own cars and drive, but do not have licenses because they fear deportation. Regardless of how you feel about this topic, it nonetheless creates a number of people on the road who are without ID and therefore also without insurance. Some of the states impacted by this have considered measures to allow undocumented workers to get state drivers licenses so they can ensure they are insured.
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  11. #11
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    "Some of the states impacted by this have considered measures to allow undocumented workers to get state drivers licenses so they can ensure they are insured."

    ...and then there is Kansas, making it harder/impossible for the "undocumented" to get licenses; thus increasing the number of uninsured drivers.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian estromberg's avatar
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    I remember once in college when I posted my DL as bond for a traffic ticket, and had to use my passport to get into the bar for a week or so until I was able to get a state id. Got some real funny looks from bouncers...

  13. #13
    Cyburbian cch's avatar
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    I have to drive a lot for my job, to look at subject properties and attended various meetings throughout the area. Even if these meetings were close enough for me to walk to, I usually have to bring along easels, a laptop and projector and stuff like that.

    Unless your planning job will only having you dealing with people within a close proximity, or you live somewhere with great public transportation, you will have to drive for your job.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Seabishop's avatar
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    Its not politically correct but if you work in a rural or suburban area and need to get to different locations the town shouldn't have to get some other guy to drive you around.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian rcgplanner's avatar
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    It is funny how a DL is the "holy grail" in the US. My g/f is 21 and doesn't have a DL, I joke with her that if she was European she would get as many strange looks. A friend of mine that lives in Belgum didn't get his DL until after he graduated college, I think he was 23 or 24, and that's commonplace in most European countries.

  16. #16

    yeah

    rcgplanner sort of hit it on the head for me. Maybe the underlying issue is that we are built in such a way that it is required that we have a license in order to do things that realistically, don't require a license. Is that confusing enough?! I guess I understand why jobs require a DL in the US. I just feel like that is another norm that stands in the way of people thinking differently about things like public transit.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian rcgplanner's avatar
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    Bingo, look at how many communities have little if any sidewalks linking neighborhoods to 'neighborhood parks'. It seems wrong to me that you have to drive to a neighborhood park.

  18. #18
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    old faaaarts

    Quote Originally posted by RichmondJake View post
    It's also good to require a DL in the event you have a marginal employee, doing just enough to get by, who picks up a DUI along the way, giving you cause to show them the door because they don't meet MQs for employment.... Trust me.
    as I was scrolling through the answers to the question, all being planning and job related, and I was wondering if anyone else had the same cynical answer I did, LOL,

    sorry to disappoint, but this is the real, harsh reason why we have it in there, what RJ said

    but yes on all the other answers - you do have to be able to get to site visits and conferences and such too

    I will l say I am good about walking to village meetings and sites within a mile of my office

  19. #19
    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by MSUplanner View post
    I have a question for everyone. I have been job searching and it surprises me to see how many jobs require a valid driver's license. I could see if you were applying for a job that might require travel, but more the most part a planner doesn't do much traveling. How do people feel about the need for a Valid Driver's License to apply for a job?
    My current employer required an AZ DL by my first day to conform to the insurance policy covering city owned cars. Since I am an economic developer I do need to drive to due my job.
    "If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less" General Eric Shinseki

  20. #20
    Cyburbian DrumLineKid's avatar
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    I do not have a DL. I crashed (no alcohol involved, it was just after work) about 1.5 years ago and was out (unconscious) like three weeks. I still don't remember that day. The Kids Mom has been taking me to interviews for the past half year. To no avail. I have been asking myself the same question. Though I understand and even support RJ's answer.

    I haven't said anything yet and wasn't asked. I understand the mandate, but don't like it. If it becomes an issue, I will have to get the Dr. to sign off. Of course my wife will fight that as much as possible.

    I am not going to pursue it, but it may be an ADA thing. reasonable accomodation?


    DLK
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  21. #21
    NIMBY asshatterer Plus Richmond Jake's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by DrumLineKid View post
    ....I am not going to pursue it, but it may be an ADA thing. reasonable accomodation?


    DLK
    I don't believe not having a DL is a protected class. But I could be wrong.
    I don't do anything right.

  22. #22
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by RichmondJake View post
    I don't believe not having a DL is a protected class. But I could be wrong.
    Not in Michigan. Here the state sees having a drivers license as a privilege and not a right... therefore there is no protection for people who don’t have a DL.

    For our job we have city cars that we drive for inspections and such so we are required to have a MI DL.
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  23. #23
    Cyburbian btrage's avatar
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    I don't understand why it's such a big deal. Just because you have a DL doesn't automatically mean that you subscribe to the auto-dependent lifestyle and that you own a vehicle.

    Entry-level planners frequently must go on site visits. Planners in management positions frequently go to off site meetings. As long as there are employer owned vehicles, what's the big deal.

  24. #24
    Cyburbian jmello's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by RichmondJake View post
    I don't believe not having a DL is a protected class. But I could be wrong.
    If you cannot get a driver's license because of a disability, it does indeed become an ADA issue and reasonable accomodations must be made (i.e. authorizing the use the bus or paratransit, assigning another employee to drive, etc.).

  25. #25
    How else would you get to workshops, meetings, trainings, etc etc? I travel at least once per week................believe me you need it..........

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