Missourians will be able to choose whether or not to have a Real ID compliant driver's license now that a new bill has been signed into law.
Missouri Governor Eric Greitens signed a bill, Monday, that will allow Missourians a choice when it comes to the Real ID debate.
Concerns over privacy issues caused the Missouri Legislature to enact a law preventing Missouri from being Real ID compliant, but the recently signed bill changes that and gives Missourians the choice.
This is good news for Rep. Steve Lynch, a co-sponsor of the bill and representative for the area around Fort Leonard Wood where Real ID has caused some issues. Lynch has been hearing complaints from constituents since Missouri lost its waiver for the Real ID act and getting on and off Fort Leonard Wood became more difficult for locals.
Lynch said the bill was difficult to get "to the floor," but had "very good bipartisan votes" when it finally made it to a vote.
"It was difficult to get it passed because of the privacy rights issue as well as the states' rights issue," Lynch told the Daily Guide in an interview Tuesday.
Lynch said that the 911 Commission had made the recommendations about Real ID because it would make driver's licenses more secure.
"Many of the terrorists had multiple state licenses and 45 states are already in compliance or some form of compliance," Lynch said.
Missourians were facing issues with being able to fly using their driver's licenses in 2018 if the law stood the way that it was.
Lynch said the Missouri has been promised a waiver by Homeland Security once the bill passed and that "nothing will change" for at least a year to two years while the state puts a system in place for those that want to be Real ID compliant.
The law doesn't go into effect until August 28, 2017, but Missourians will have to wait to get their new Real ID compliant driver's licenses until the system is created.
When asked what the difference will be for those seeking a Real ID verses the one Missourians currently have, Lynch said there wasn't much difference.
Currently, when someone applies for a driver's license they have to show the same sorts of identification that is required for a Real ID, the difference will be that the information will be stored. Lynch said, as an example, birth certificates will be scanned, but will be in a system without internet access for security purposes.
"Missouri is still in charge of driver's licenses," Lynch said.