A sample New York state driver's license
A sample New York state driver's license - 
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Renita Jablonski: It's been postponed a few times.
But some day soon, Americans will have to carry passports when they travel anywhere outside the country -- including Canada and Mexico. New York has joined Washington State in trying to make things easier. It's introducing an enhanced drivers license which will double as a passport. Alisa Roth reports.

Alisa Roth: All American citizens living in New York will be eligible for the new license, which will let people travel to Mexico, Canada and the Caribbean without a passport.

The state's Department of Motor Vehicles will issue the document. It'll cost more than a plain old license. But less than an actual passport. It's designed to speed up the notoriously slow border crossings between the U.S. and Canada. To make cross-border business faster and more efficient.

Patricia Eddington is a New York Assemblywoman. She's skeptical of the new plan.

Patricia Eddington: It'll probably make the line go a whole lot faster. But I don't just necessarily want the line to go faster, I want to make sure that all of those commercial trucks and vehicles are checked.

The new and improved license will look similar to the current one. The state says it should be available by the end of the summer.

In New York, I'm Alisa Roth for Marketplace.