Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said on Wednesday that he would seek to give federal officials access to state driving records for applicants to Global Entry and other federal programs that allow travelers to quickly pass through airports and borders.
The announcement by Mr. Cuomo comes days after federal officials banned New York residents from applying to — and re-enrolling in — the programs, known as the Trusted Traveler Program.
Mr. Cuomo made the announcement during a radio interview on Wednesday morning, in which he also said he would meet with President Trump on Thursday to discuss the traveler programs and access to the driving records.
Administration officials stressed that the potential change would only include applicants to Trusted Traveler programs, such as Global Entry, not carte-blanche access to State Department of Motor Vehicle records.
Last week, the Department of Homeland Security announced the ban, citing its inability to access those records as the reason. The move caused a furious reaction from Mr. Cuomo and a lawsuit challenging the federal action from the state attorney general, Letitia James.
The conflict over the Trusted Traveler Program stems from a 2019 law, often known as the Green Light law, that allowed undocumented immigrants to apply for driver’s licenses and forbade federal officials from accessing state Department of Motor Vehicles records without a court order.
On Wednesday, administration officials said that the governor would attempt to make the change via new legislation in the state budget or a separate bill, meaning that most likely the change in state policy would not take effect until April at the earliest.
Mr. Cuomo, a third-term Democrat, insisted on Wednesday that he believed federal authorities were using the Trusted Traveler issue as a feint, in an effort to seek out undocumented immigrants.
“We think ICE will use it just to attack people,” the governor said, likening the Trump administration’s action to “a person at the door saying, ‘Let me in or I’ll burn down the house,’ and I said, ‘OK, you’re invited in.’”
The White House did not immediately return a request for comment on the governor’s remarks. Previously, federal officials have been forceful in condemning New York’s Green Light law, presenting it as a threat to national security.