From IBATs listserv:
On August 7, the Texas Attorney General issued Opinion No. JC-0540, http://intranet1.oag.state.tx.us/opinions/jc/JC0540.pdf
, which holds that a bank cannot use the magnetic stripe on the back of a Texas drivers license to verify the identity of the person trying to open a new account. In a letter that IBAT sent to the Chairman of the Texas House of Representatives Financial Institutions Committee, we made the argument that the USA Patriot Act and in particular, title 3 of that act, the International Money Laundering Abatement and Anti-Terrorism Financial Act, passed by Congress in response to the September 11, 2001 attacks, required expanded due diligence requirements for banks and minimum standards for the identification of persons applying to open accounts. In spite of the argument of over-riding federal intent, the ruling stated that a state law was not preempted unless it was in direct conflict with the federal law. The federal law does not directly mandate that banks utilize the magnetic stripe on the drivers license. Therefore it is not in conflict with the state law which limits the use of the magnetic stripe for "law enforcement and other government purposes." IBAT will therefore add the amendment of Transportation Code Section 521.126 to its 2003 state legislative agenda.