Archive for the ‘States’ Category

OUR VIEW: Down the slippery slope to a national ID card

Getting a license to drive is a rite of passage for Indiana teenagers.

It used to be so easy. Get a learner’s permit, take a driver’s education course, wait 30 days after turning 16 and you can drive anywhere, at any time, with anybody.

Not so anymore.

Indiana teens are now issued a probationary license that restricts driving hours and who can ride in the car. A full license is issued at age 18.

That’s all done in the name of safety, of course. That’s tough to argue against.

But a misguided proposal being floated in Congress would take away states’ ability to regulate issuing licenses.

It’s another example of our benevolent federal government deciding yet again that one size does, indeed, fit all. The feds believe that only this new legislation can protect us from ourselves, despite the fact that all states except North Dakota already place restrictions on teen drivers.  ::: MORE HERE:::

BTC – AAMVA or the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators published every state’s progress for benchmarks and compliance.

If you are currently unsure of what your state is doing regarding material compliance with the Real ID act or the PASS ID Act coming up for congressional revision; you might want to search this document for your state’s DMV or driver’s license division.
The very first benchmark is something privacy and identity advocates will pay special attention to among others…

1 § 37.11(a) Subject each applicant to a mandatory facial image capture and retain such image even if a driver license (DL) or

identification card (ID) is not issued

[DEADLINE =] 3/2010 DMV’s new software system will integrate this requirement. Work flow of DL/ID transaction being reconfigured. Work stations will now include cameras to capture digital photos of all DL/ID applicants

National ID bashing with Cato’s, Jim Harper

by Jim Harper

I’ve written here before about how the National Governors Association is seeking to peddle state power over driver licensing and identification to the federal government in order to cement its role as a supplicant for states in Washington, D.C.

NGA is currently seeking to drum up a false, end-of-year driver license crisis to convince Congress to pass a new version of REAL ID called PASS ID, moving the national ID project forward.

The letter says that states must be “materially compliant” with the REAL ID Act by the end of the year or their citizens will not be able to use their driver’s licenses as identification to board commercial aircraft. This is technically true, in one sense, but it omits some important information.

The statutory deadline for REAL ID compliance was actually a year and a half ago, May of 2008. No state was in compliance then, and the Department of Homeland Security gave out deadline extensions wholesale—even to states that didn’t ask for them.

If Congress takes no action by the end of the year, the DHS will simply do this again. There is no end-of-year driver license crisis.

And it’s no harm, no foul—nobody who has studied identity-based security believes that the national ID law would cost-effectively protect the country. Ignoring or repealing REAL ID are the best paths forward.

The NGA, of course, believes that states will be better off with its preferred version of REAL ID. Some of the sharpest corners are taken off REAL ID in the new ”PASS ID“ version, but states are kidding themselves if they think PASS ID is good for their bottom lines.

As I wrote beforetwice!—PASS ID is likely to cost states as much or more than REAL ID. Its requirements are essentially the same, and its implementation deadline—one of the biggest cost drivers—is tighter in some respects than REAL ID.

Will Congress slip PASS ID into law by the end of the year the way REAL ID was slipped into law four-plus years ago? It’ll be interesting to see…

5-11 Official Release

12 States overlooked with opposition to the Real ID Act

WASHINGTON -Advocacy researchers concluded late last week that only 13 out of 25 States were recognized for rejecting federal Real ID Act.  The flaw was first noticed during a hearing where legislation was reconsidered for  replacement by the PASS Act, July 15th.

Misinformation is currently billed as the primary cause of confusion. Local and national media reported large variances in the number of states opposed to the national identity program, ranging from 11 to 43.  Researchers from the ACLU, Electronic Privacy Information Center and the 5-11 Campaign sponsored a cohesive total of States after finding consistent errors in national reporting following the hearing.

There was no response from Homeland Security when asked about the reason for the discrepancy.

PASS Act to Continue Majority of Real ID policy

The PASS Act would carry forward the majority of the Real ID language, to the dismay of State level opponents to the Real ID Act.   States rejected the federal law due to the program’s lack of consideration for privacy, identity security and expensive compliance costs.  Edits to current federal law are viewed by PASS Act’s proponents as a way to incorporate privacy considerations and a way for States afford to implement the program.  

In a highly indirect alliance, supporters and opponents of the Real ID Act have come out against the newer legislation.  Those in favor of the Real ID Act say the PASS Act isn’t secure enough to stop terrorists.  Those opposed to the Real ID Act say the PASS Act goes against States wishes to reject an unfunded mandate and a way to outmaneuver State laws against a national identity boondoggle.

The Real ID Act originally was passed as a rider to a 2005 supplemental defense and tsunami relief appropriations bill.   Information about States who passed local laws against Real ID are listed below.
TOTAL : 15 


TOTAL : 10 





To withhold certain highway funds if a State does not comply with certain requirements in issuing a driver’s license or identification card, and for other purposes.

BTC Exclusive

In my work approaching State legislators, some of them are cowing down due to threats of losing federal funding for their Highways by hitching them to Real ID regulatory conditions (Yes, the exact ones you hate). Otherwise this is still a voluntary unfunded mandate; the same as it was when it was passed on May 11th, 2005. There is a federal bill out there, HR 140, very similar to the one which died last session without even entering committee, that dearly craves the public-private bankrolling from your identity traffic.  I assure you, that is what is driving it.

I find it highly ironic that 4 Republicans from the destitute state of California stepped up to try to move this forward. California is suffering immensely due to lack of State funds. Cali also had a garden variety of pan-partisan effort to drown HB 60, CA’s Real ID bill, when it came up for air last session -R.I.P.

So I take delicious glee in naming names of the federal traitors trying to bully a broke state into a place of reckless endangerment. The technologies are neither secure or affordable. Many needs go ahead of Real ID compliant licenses. Especially when most states have insituted secure license measures before the passage of the Real ID Act.


Rep. Elton Gallegly [R-CA]introduced
Cosponsors [as of 2009-01-14]
Rep. Roscoe Bartlett [R-MD]
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher [R-CA]
Rep. Brian Bilbray [R-CA]
Rep. John Campbell [R-CA]

I think we can live without our nationalized ID with surveillance capacity. However, they are going to try to starve states into making it happen.

There are a couple of ways to tell them your State will not suffer from this coercion:

1)Contact your State’s federal legislators and tell them as a constituent that you cannot afford the comprehensive damages to your identity in this time of economic crisis and that you feel secure license technologies are available without volunteering for the Real ID license regulations. Ask them to oppose HB140.

2) Contact & fiscally support grassroots lobbies who understand what is happening, and will send someone to fight for you in Washington.

Wherever you are in the political strata there are those who will support your position. Here are a few who are working to curb Federal coercion on Real ID:

Center for Democracy & Technology
The Electronic Frontier Foundation
The American Civil Liberties Union
The Bill of Rights Defense Committee
The Stop Real ID Coalition

Real ID – REAL UNPOPULAR : DHS Digs Deep to Make it Happen
Unfunded mandate.  Two words ringing in the ears of DHS, who sincerely believe that funding is the only problem with moving Real ID forward.  The grain of truth to this is that only 5-7 US states have not filed any legislative resolution to block Real ID’s passage, primarily due to lack of state funding.  The moment of truth has arrived in the fight for US privacy;  the DHS is now making a way to feed the greedy bellies of government contractors, Viisage/L1 Technologies and the other Big Brother, Digimarc with the 2008 Real ID Demonstration Grant Program. Even with the grant program – which isn’t all that much-  I think states are onto something in the ambition of keeping the money away from DHS on this one.
Put Up or Shut up: Life in post Iraq-recession
Escalating gas and food prices, costs of living and the declines of the housing market have left American’s and their states sadly hurting financially.  DHS has run afoul of growling state taxpayers unwilling to fork over the network start-up costs of hundred’s of millions of dollars to finance the new world order- uh, I mean new WORLD CLASS – IDs.   More calculating state governments made “license revision” budget requests in previous legislative sessions.  When federal regulations were released for Real IDs in January 2008, the wheels were oiled to move forward with implementations for your new 3D face prints and radio frequency ID chipped licenses. If you live in one of these states, more fighting is ahead against implementation.
If you have a problem with this, go press these people and tell them to STOP IT.  They are the ones pandering to the DHS so identity thieves can just feast on all the means you have to be who you are with the great new insecure technologies YOU are paying for.
The problem?  Broadcasters don’t get to discriminate on who gets their message.  Radio Frequency ID chips to be found in some Real IDs can be picked up by anyone with a UPC gun -a fact frequently posted on this blog.  Joe-Identity-Thief doesn’t have to do much to get your information out of the DMV databases either. The ACLU has been fighting hard to stop the finance of any feature that leaves American IDs open for the unique exposures we are staring down right now with current DHS regulations.
It also appears that our government is currently obsessed with getting your picture in 3d. That’s also a little unnerving.  They need to relax.   The contensions with the FISA wiretapping nonsense and the FEMA-Halliburtons secret prisons may cause you to think maybe our government doesn’t really think we can run our own show without them.    What has the average American done, except pay taxes, that requires THIS MUCH surveillance? Most Americans are waking up to the new McCarthyism.  Today, when I hear the word “terrorism” from a public official all I hear is :”You are now losing more of your American born freedoms- now pay up!” I digress..
Real ID’s mean more controls at airports and at federal facilities.  If TSA gives you the heebie jeebies, you can fly general aviation.  However, this is a symptom of the problem: the DHS making irrational demands on your American identity;  not because they really need to know about you flying out for your heart surgery in Des Moines.  It’s about having to answer to them about that.  You didn’t do anything wrong.  
Hey US government – this goes both ways – you question us : we question you.  We are all American’s here, but there is a line. Real IDs cross that line.  The 5-11 Campaign exists because an overindulged corporate oligarchy stepped in and made a decision for us and was passed without public input or states vote in HR 1268 – brought to you by G.W. Bush Inc.  Now we have a duty to ourselves to stop you from moving this forward.

Maine and South Carolina

RADIO NEWSCAST on Spychips with Katherine Albrecht 3-29-08

DHS determined non-compliant states will be inconvenienced after May 11th, 2008 boarding airlines and entering federal buildings with their current state ID’s. To date, not a single state is able comply with Real ID standards issued by the Department of Homeland Security or are logistically prepared to meet the requirements by the May 11th deadline this year. This substantiated the need to issue a state extension plan with a deadline of MONDAY, March 31, 2008.

Montana is now considered “compliant” by the DHS, based on a statement from the Montana governor’s office after a face-off earlier this week. The Montana Governor stood up for citizens to be exempted from hassles at federal buildings and airports saying of his contest letter to DHS,

“I sent them a horse and if they want to call it a zebra, that’s up to them,” Schweitzer said. “They can call it whatever they want, and it wasn’t a love letter.”

New Hampshire Reaches DHS Compromise 3-27-08
some update c/o AP

New Hampshire (NH) hoped to be exempted based on the first issue of their letter which the DHS rejected, finding the letter not to be “legally acceptable”. The second letter yielded way to for its citizens passage into federal Bbuildings and airlines without discrimination.

“I am pleased that the federal government has recognized that the citizens of New Hampshire should not be singled out, and that it will not impose Real ID requirements here beginning in May,” Gov. Lynch said.

“We have a law that prohibits New Hampshire from taking part in this burdensome system. New Hampshire, along with many other states has raised legitimate questions about the costs and privacy issues associated with Real ID. Congress must listen to the very real concerns of states and citizens, and re-think the entire Real ID program, ” said Lynch is a press statement yesterday.

c/o cooperation from TheState,

Columbia, SC- According to the South Carolina’s (SC) Governor’s office, meetings to decide on the extension status of Real ID been ongoing. The decision on the direction for South Carolina will more than likely be released on Monday. Unlike Montana, Maine and New Hampshire, no letter was issued from their offices with requests to spare constituents hassles at both federal buildings and airlines. The governor’s office said their priorities addressing Real ID for locals are: funding, convenience, and privacy. Priviously this week the SC attorney’s general’s office held off on a potential lawsuit to sue feds over the act, saying it was “too soon to sue the Federal Government”.

Area news sources indicated from the frequency of the types of meetings with the governor’s office, funding may be the heaviest weighted issue for the state. Public officials gave comment that South Carolina does not have a “stellar record on privacy” with direct regards to their licenses. Allthough, sources cite that the state is holding firm to their story that current licenses meet Real ID requirements.


Augusta, ME- 9:22 am EST, Maine’s governor was meeting internally to discuss Real ID. Maine had released a letter very similar to Montana’ to exempt citizens concerned about privacy, travel hassles and the costs.

The Attorney General’s office expresed concern that there would not be enough time between January, 12 2008, now and May 11th, 2008 to get passports for air travel from state-to-state.

“Maine has made tremendous progress in improving our driver’s license, and our State has made it clear that we do not support REAL ID,” Governor Baldacci said. “But I also felt it was necessary to send this letter to the Department of Homeland Security. I do not want to see Maine people used as a political pawn in a dispute between federal and state authorities. Come May 11, Mainers should be able to travel without extra security or unnecessary delays. To target them would be unfair.”

Governor Baldacci also said Wednesday that there is an alternative to REAL ID.

“Maine Rep. Tom Allen has submitted bipartisan legislation that would repeal REAL ID and replace it with a process that will improve national security without placing an enormous financial burden on states or compromising civil liberties,” Governor Baldacci said. “There is an alternative to the path we’re on. I hope Congress and the President will take it.”

Rep. Allen’s bill, H.R. 1117, re-establishes a negotiated rulemaking process involving all stakeholders to develop standards for state driver’s licenses. Maine was engaged in this process, which was working before its repeal by the REAL ID Act.

More News:
(AP)- People over 50 are getting exemption from presenting a Real ID compliant card by 2014, but will need to provide a Real- ID compliant license by 2017.