Dayton signs Real ID bill

Louis Holland
May 20, 2017

After that point, Minnesotans will have options: a Real ID license that will allow for access to airports, military facilities and federal buildings, or a standard license, which won't be valid for air travel or entrance to military or federal buildings. Lawmakers agreed to shift that debate to a separate bill so Minnesota could finally move ahead with adoption of Real ID.

Governor Dayton has offered two proposals in a compromise to legislators, both including higher tab fees.

By the time the bill came to the House floor, members were all talked out.

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Minnesotans can continue to use their current driver's license as a form of identification to board domestic flights until January 22, 2018.

Under Dayton's plan, $83 million of that money would go to the state's courts and public safety budget, $45 million for state government cybersecurity measures on state systems and $10 million should be left unspent.

Once Dayton signs the bill, Smith said the state would be able to secure an extension through October 2020, by which time the state should be up to speed in issuing Real ID-compliant licenses. The non-compliant license will not require the extra checks needed for a Real ID license and it can not be used for federal purposes.

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Once REAL ID-compliant cards are available, Minnesotans may choose a REAL ID-compliant card or a noncompliant card when they renew or apply for a new license or ID. "Real Minnesotans who are elderly, who are disabled, who are down-and-out, and they're gonna take away services and dollars for them", says Dayton. Those with non-compliant licenses, though, will need an extra form of identification, like a passport, for airport security and other federal purposes. Many Republicans wanted to legally ban undocumented immigrants from getting licenses to prevent the possibility of administrative action.

While prospects for settling the budget remained cloudy, the Real ID agreement constituted actual progress on a long-unresolved issue.

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