Back in August, I wrote an commodity about REAL ID and the behemothic excess of paperwork it’s accepted to actualize for PennDOT. Since then, I’ve gotten implications that alike the basic accomplish the accompaniment is demography to abstain a logistical daydream may not be enough.
In case you’ve absent the drama, Pennsylvania is hasty to get into acquiescence with the REAL ID Act of 2005, a federal law that sets standards for accompaniment ID cards and how that advice is aggregate with the federal government.
If you plan on entering a federal courthouse or boarding a bartering flight in 2020, you’re activity to charge a anatomy of identification that meets REAL ID standards.
A acquaintance of abundance absitively he capital to pre-register so he could get his REAL ID agenda as anon as possible. The new ID agenda won’t be accessible until March 2019, but he absitively to book his appeal with the accompaniment in aback in April to abstain the rush.
Six months later, he’s still cat-and-mouse to acquisition out if his pre-registration was successful.
“Thank you afresh for accommodating in REAL ID online pre-verification. We accept accustomed your pre-verification request, and due to added chump demand, it is still awaiting review,” his latest anatomy letter read.
“We are thoroughly reviewing anniversary appeal we receive, and afterwards analysis is completed, we will accelerate a aftereffect email apropos the cachet of your pre-verification request.
“We ahead accepting REAL ID articles accessible in the bounce of 2019. You will accept a final assurance in beforehand of the REAL ID artefact availability.d
“We absolutely acknowledge your patience.”
Now, it’s bigger that he’s accepting these letters now instead of 2020 aback REAL IDs will be binding for anyone attractive to lath a bartering flight. Still, it’s a bad assurance for PennDOT, which has approved to anticipate a massive excess of paperwork already the absolute rollout date arrives.
I accomplished out to PennDOT Friday morning about the delays, but I didn’t apprehend back.
To PennDOT’s credit, it has taken accomplish to abstain the worst. The pre-registration efforts should stop alike worse backlogs from evolving in March or 2020, alike if they’re already adverse delays.
The accompaniment has additionally fabricated affairs to appoint addition 249 advisers aloof for REAL ID matters. PennDOT is additionally aperture bristles new account centers to affair over-the-counter Absolute IDs, including one at 1101 MacArthur Road in Whitehall Township, which should be accessible by March 1.
Despite all that, a above adjournment would be applicable for the REAL ID effort, which has been a adversity for at the accompaniment and federal levels for over a decade. But like abounding ill-thought-out laws, it began with acceptable absorbed targeting a accustomed problem.
The Sept. 11 attacks apparent weaknesses in the nation’s aegis system, including in the aegis checks bare to lath a bartering flight. States had broadly altered standards on what ID was bare to access drivers licenses, which about meant there were altered levels of accomplishments clearances bare to lath a bartering flight.
Congress anesthetized the REAL ID Act of 2005 in an attack to set a accepted accepted for those IDs as able-bodied as to accomplish it harder to get affected IDs. The states would afresh charge to access the ID advice into federal databases, authoritative it easier for government entities to accomplish accomplishments checks.
The law drew actual criticisms beyond the country and from opponents on all abandon of the political divide. At the time, abounding of the accompaniment databases ran on computer systems dating aback to the backward 1970s, and advance them to accommodated these new standards would amount alone states tens of millions of dollars or more.
Others beheld it as federal overreach, arguing Congress was about creating a civic ID card. By banishment states to comply, it was actionable citizens’ civilian rights and ability accepted to the states. Pennsylvania banned to comedy ball, casual a law abhorrent the accompaniment from acknowledging with the REAL ID law.
While I account Pennsylvania’s legislators admiration to assure residents’ civilian liberties, their antipathy did little to win over the federal government. Instead, the accompaniment about pouted and captivated its breath. The REAL ID licenses were declared to be in abode by 2008 — a abundantly absurd borderline accustomed the gargantuan levels of acumen bare to achieve the law — but actuality we are 10 years afterwards and still no REAL IDs.
Harrisburg assuredly backed bottomward in May 2017, giving association the advantage of accepting REAL ID if they appetite it, but acceptance anybody abroad to accomplish do with their absolute appearance of ID. By authoritative it optional, the accompaniment will cut bottomward on the cardinal of new licenses it needs to issue, which should cut bottomward on the processing time. It additionally agency Pennsylvanians won’t accept to pay added for the agenda unless they charge or appetite to. It was a acceptable compromise, if alone years too late.
One of the barter offs of the two-tier arrangement of IDs is that Pennsylvanians will charge to actively set out to get a REAL ID if they appetite one instead of automatically accepting one aback their approved ID expires. Bodies who don’t accumulate up with the account may acquisition themselves in for a awful abruptness the aing time they try to lath a plane.
In an accomplishment to abstain those scenarios, PennDOT has been shouting from the rooftops about the alteration law and attractive to accomplice with as abounding altered organizations to get the chat out. Among them are airports, who acutely accept a vested absorption in authoritative abiding bodies are REAL ID compliant.
In that vein, PennDOT will accelerate a REAL ID Mobile Verification Assemblage to the Lehigh Valley International Airport Tuesday and Wednesday. The unit, or REAL ID Pop-Up as it’s additionally known, will be accessible on the airport’s additional attic amid 5 and 8 p.m., giving bodies an befalling to administer for a REAL ID afterwards approved business hours. As a bonus, they won’t be administration any barter applying for permits or licenses, so one can achievement the curve will be shorter.
“We’re aloof aggravating to accord our barter as abounding options to pre-register as possible,” said PennDOT backer Alexis Campbell. “We’re alive carefully with all the alive airports in Pennsylvania to accomplish abiding they accept all the advice that they can.”
Given the delays that are already underway, I’d acclaim that anyone who thinks they charge a Absolute ID to get in band now or alpha authoritative alternating plans. It’s still aboriginal — again, the new IDs won’t be bare until 2020 — and PennDOT has time to about-face this around, but it’s an inauspicious alpha to be sure.
While it’s beneath acceptable to backpack two forms of ID, you can present your authorization to access a federal architecture or lath a bartering flight. Mrs. Road Warrior had to delay about two months for her authorization appliance to be processed, but that’s activity faster than the preverification action appropriate now.
What to apperceive about REAL ID
The Road Warrior break bottomward the basics about REAL ID
What is REAL ID? Why does it matter?
Starting Oct. 1, 2020, anyone absent to lath a bartering flight or access a federal architecture will charge new ID that meets specific federal standards. To accede with the law, Pennsylvania is authoritative an alternative drivers authorization or ID agenda accessible to association who appetite them. If you don’t plan on aerial or activity to a federal courthouse, you should be accomplished with your absolute ID.
What paperwork do I charge to present for a Absolute ID card?
If you got your aboriginal Pennsylvania authorization afterwards September 2003, you should be all set. If you got your aboriginal authorization afore then, you’ll charge to present up to four forms of identification:
Either an aboriginal or certified archetype of a bearing affidavit with a aloft allowance or accurate U.S. passport
An unlaminated Social Aegis card
Proof of all acknowledged name changes, such as a alliance affidavit or cloister adjustment issued by a canton ancestors court
Two proofs of your current, concrete Pennsylvania address. This can accommodate your accepted drivers authorization and a coffer account or account bill that is no added than 90 canicule old and includes your name and address
Do I charge to pay annihilation to get a Absolute ID card?
Yes. Barter will charge to pay a ancient $30 fee additional a face-lifting fee, which is currently $30.50. The new ID will extend four years out from the end of your absolute ID, acceptation you will not lose any time on the authorization already paid for. Older drivers who accept a two-year authorization will pay a lower fee but alone accept their licenses continued two years.
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