States will get more than five additional years to comply with its controversial nationwide Real ID program, the second such delay in a year, reports the Washington Post. By May 2011, the program to tighten national standards for driver’s licenses would require motorists born after Dec. 1, 1964, to submit a digital photograph upon application, a birth certificate or similar proof of identity, and a statement on penalty of perjury that information provided on applications was true. Other changes would take effect in 2014. Drivers older than 50 would have until 2018 to meet the new requirements.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security revised the ID plan after states and civil libertarians criticized draft regulations as unworkable and threatening to Americans’ privacy by creating a de facto national ID for 245 million U.S. drivers. Seventeen states have passed legislation opposing or opting out of the program. The 2005 law authorizing Real ID set a May 2008 deadline for implementation. The delay will allow state motor vehicle departments to avoid a surge of applications and instead to phase in more secure licenses as motorists reach their scheduled license renewal dates. The change will lower the projected $14.6 billion state cost of the program to no more than $3.9 billion.