ICE MOUs/MOAs (Driver and Motor Vehicles Division)

Emma North-Best filed this request with the Driver and Motor Vehicles Division of Oregon.
Multi Request ICE MOUs/MOAs


From: Emma North-Best

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Oregon Public Records Law, I hereby request the following records:

Copies of any Memoranda of Agreement (MOAs), Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs), memoranda of agreement or other liaison, information sharing or prisoner/detainee transfer agreements or delegations of authority with or involving Immigration and Customs Enforcement signed or otherwise put into effect between March 1, 2003 and the present.

I am a member of the news media and request classification as such. I have previously written about the government and its activities, with some reaching over 100,000 readers. As such, as I have a reasonable expectation of publication and my editorial and writing skills are well established. In addition, I discuss and comment on the files online and make them available through non-profits such as the Internet Archive and MuckRock, disseminating them to a large audience. While my research is not limited to this, a great deal of it, including this, focuses on the activities and attitudes of the government itself. As such, it is not necessary for me to demonstrate the relevance of this particular subject in advance.

As my primary purpose is to inform about government activities by reporting on it and making the raw data available, I request that fees be waived.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 business days.


Emma Best

From: Driver and Motor Vehicles Division

Please complete this form and email it back to me at your convenience so we can start your record request.

David House
DMV / Motor Carrier Public Affairs

From: Driver and Motor Vehicles Division

Hi again,

After sending you our records request form, I realized I might be able to answer your question without the form - I'll leave that decision up to you.

We also saw the article in the Washington Post, and Oregon does not participate in these federal or interstate facial recognition programs because Oregon statutes clearly state that our facial recognition software may be used ONLY for issuance of driver licenses and ID cards. When our state legislature crafted the facial recognition statute, it intentionally excluded any kind of "fishing" use - by specifying the only way it can be used.

Over the years we have been asked by law enforcement agencies to run photos through our facial recognition software, which we began using in 2009. Oregon DMV does not comply with such requests.

DMV declines these requests based on our interpretation of the Oregon statute, which the state DOJ agreed with. Oregon's facial recognition statute, ORS 807.024, limits the use of DMV's facial recognition system to credential issuances in DMV field offices. If fraud/identity theft is suspected, the results of the check can be shared with law enforcement that has jurisdiction over the alleged crime, per statute. In addition, ORS 807.026(2)) says the biometric data may not be made available to anyone other than employees of the department acting in an official capacity.

Law enforcement occasionally will contact DMV when they have a photograph of a suspect and ask us to run it through our facial recognition system looking for a match. We deny these requests based on the statutes above.

Law enforcement can inquire upon a specific individual's photographs via ORS 807.115 - and DMV will provide the photograph itself. Law enforcement could potentially run that individual photo through another facial recognition search, but that would not be tracked by Oregon DMV.

We are not aware that we've received any requests from ICE specifically.

And no law enforcement agency has ever requested all or even a batch of Oregon DMV photos for any purpose, including for use in their own facial recognition software. We evaluate the purpose of record requests, and such a request would be denied because of the above statutes.

Maybe this answers your inquiry.

David House
Oregon DMV / Motor Carrier Public Affairs


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