Rich Connelly notes in the Houston Press that license renewals are about to become FUN in Texas:
The federal Real ID act requires everyone renewing a license after May 11, 2008, to present a passport or birth certificate and a valid Social Security card. (After doing it once, you can then go back to online renewals.)
That’s 16 million Texans who will have to be processed over a five-year period.
“It’s going to be a little slice of heaven,” Mange says.
For the first year alone, DPS is budgeting $160 million for increased personnel, extended office hours and possibly new locations to handle the crush.
States can opt out of the Real ID program — there are bills before the legislature calling for Texas to do so — but then those states are considered “non-compliant” by the feds. And that means you wouldn’t be able to use your driver’s license to board a plane or get in any federal building.
Some dozen states have already opted out. The hope among some folks is that if enough states do so, the feds will have to adjust their plans.
If that doesn’t happen, though, you can look forward to waiting with millions of your fellow Texans as a state bureaucracy tries to handle a flood of new transactions in an untested process.
I feel safer, don’t you?
Especially since a library card and social security card can be used as forms of identification to get on plane.
Yep. Definitely safer.