Illinois residents might not be able to use their driver’s licenses at airports starting in 2016.
The Daily Herald reports the licenses don’t meet requirements set by the 2005 Real ID Act that were meant to increase security. Illinois doesn’t require a birth certificate to get a driver’s license, which Illinois Secretary of State spokesman Henry Haupt said is one of the law’s mandates.
Haupt said state legislators would have to approve funding for changes to driver’s license requirements. He said he’s not sure how much it would cost, but the Secretary of State’s office previously estimated it would take $100 million to $150 million to be in compliance. The federal government isn’t offering funding.
Driver’s licenses meet the federal mandates in 22 states. Illinois is one of 21 states to be granted extensions. Seven other states refuse to follow federal requirements. A 2007 resolution passed in Illinois said the Real ID Act “would provide little security benefit and still leave identification systems open to insider fraud, counterfeit documentation and database failures.”
The Illinois Secretary of State’s office hopes to unveil a new card with better security features in the near future, Haupt said, but it’s not known whether it would meet federal requirements.
As early as 2016, the Department of Homeland Security website says fliers with noncompliant driver’s licenses would need another valid ID, such as a passport or military ID. The requirements are already in place to gain entry at certain federal buildings and nuclear facilities.
Source: ABC 7