States are more aware of the painful wait for the DHS ...

A web article at ContactLess News discusses awareness of the wait for the DHS to properly define Real ID so that it can be implmented. (With obvious hindsight, congress should NEVER have passed this law without requiring DHS to add its specification to the law first.) The writer, Andy Williams, says:
The act gave states until May 11, 2008 to comply. But comply with what? A year has passed since the act's adoption and the overseeing federal agency, the Department of Homeland Security, has yet to develop rules that would spell out those compliance measures. For example, what kind of ID card will be required? Will it have to have an RFID chip? And, most importantly, when will the rules for complying with Real ID even be issued?

According to Jarrod Agen, DHS spokesman, the first draft of the regulations won't even be published in the Federal Register until the second half of 2006. Then, there must follow public hearings and public input, so final rules aren't likely until early next year, he added. That would give states just a little more than a year to meet the guidelines.

The article also mentions joint recommendations by three groups to the DHS (AAMVA, governors and state legislators):

  • A potential 75% increase annually in visits to motor vehicle agencies.
  • The need for additional staff, facilities, training and equipment.
  • Only flexible regulations can ensure compliance.
  • Even if the regulations were in place now, there still isn't enough time to implement the requirements as defined by the statute. "The absence of timely regulations, systems and resources will ultimately overwhelm all good intentions," the document notes.
  • Implementation costs will be significant ... States are in the process of conducting a fiscal impact survey to accurately define the level of resources needed to meet federal standards.


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