Eight states, including Missouri, are not compliant with a federal law that requires a special ID to board planes and to gain access to military bases and federal facilities. The REAL ID Act, which was passed in 2005, requires stricter identification standards for homeland security and immigration purposes. State Senator Ryan Silvey (R-Kansas City) says the law is causing problems for Missourians who don’t have a REAL ID and are trying to gain access to military bases and federal facilities.
Silvey will pre-file legislation that would allow Missourians to choose if they want a so-called Real ID. His measure would also require the Department of Revenue to create a REAL ID-compliant license and a non-compliant ID to offer to residents.
“It is something that has to be fixed. Whether we just go to a fully-compliant license for everyone or whether we give people a choice, before long this is going to be a problem for everyone as far as domestic airline travel,” says Silvey.
Starting in 2018, Missourians won’t be allowed to board planes unless state lawmakers pass legislation that complies with the federal law.
“My understanding is that our current license is very, very close to compliance. There’s only one or two things that are not compliant,” says Silvey.
He did not have a projected cost available to direct the Missouri Department of Revenue to make the changes.
“It needs to be addressed and I don’t think cost is going to be an issue,” says Silvey.
Critics of the law say it invades people’s privacy.
“Clearly we have a prohibition on implementing REAL ID, based on some privacy concerns that were raised back in 2009. To the extent that those privacy concerns still exist, I think we have an opportunity to respect those but allow others to choose to participate in the program if they want to,” says Silvey.
Silvey sponsored similar legislation this year, but didn’t make it out of a committee.