Missouri Receives Extension for Real ID Compliance
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has issued an extension for Missouri to make the switch to federally-compliant forms of personal identification. Missouri IDs may now be used for federal purposes, such as boarding an airplane, through Aug. 1, 2019.
In 2005, Congress passed the Real ID Act, creating new federal standards for state-issued identification cards following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The purpose of the act was to strengthen national security at airports, military basses and various other federal facilities, but some critics raised privacy concerns over its document retention requirement.
Since then, many states have begun the process of switching to more secure forms of identification. Last year, the Missouri General Assembly approved House Bill 151, later signed into law, making future state licenses automatically compliant with the Real ID Act unless an applicant specifically requests a noncompliant license.
Real ID compliance has been a controversial topic for many years, but I’m thankful the Missouri Legislature came to a sensible compromise. We should do what we can to adhere to federal standards put in place for national security purposes, but we should also protect the individual freedom of those who don’t want to have their personal information in a new federal database.
The Missouri Department of Revenue has said it is on track to issue federally-compliant IDs in March 2019, well before the end of the extension.
As always, please feel free to call, email or write with your ideas or concerns. My Capitol office number is (573) 751-1415, my email is email@example.com and my mailing address is Room 332, State Capitol Building, Jefferson City, MO 65101.
This column was updated on Oct. 2 to include the latest information on the Real ID extension.