Arizona House to Consider Making State Licenses Federally Compliant

Mar 27, 2015

The Arizona House is attempting to update the state’s driver’s license standards to be in compliance with federal law. As Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports, without the changes license-holders could be kept from boarding airplanes and entering federal facilities as soon as next year.

The federal Real ID Act requires states to verify an applicant’s identity and citizenship before issuing a driver’s license. But in 2008 the Arizona legislature, passed a law exempting the state from that requirement. At the time lawmakers cited cost and privacy concerns because Arizona drivers would be entered into a federal database.

Unless the state’s license requirements are updated, Arizona residents would have to present passports or other federally issued IDs for domestic travel.

The House bill would give Arizonans the option to apply for Real ID-compliant licenses.

The Homeland Security Department has not announced a specific date for implementing the rules.