SACRAMENTO (OBSNews.com) – SB 60, the California Real ID Act, authored by Sen. Gilbert Cedillo (D- Los Angeles) will head to a full Senate vote next week. The bill would bring California in compliance with the federal implementation deadline of 2011 and authorize California Department of Motor Vehicles to issue Real ID driver’s licenses which meet or exceed the minimum security standards set by the Department of Homeland Security.
The federal schedule for Real ID roll-out would have states begin to issue the new licenses to all new applicants beginning January 1, 2011. Drivers with existing licenses would receive the new version in phases upon renewal – drivers born before December 1964 will receive the new license upon renewal beginning in 2014 and drivers born after December 1964 upon renewal beginning 2017.
SB 60 will bring the state of California into compliance with the federal Real ID Act which calls for standardizing the process for issuing and appearance of driver’s licenses. Federal Real ID allows for a second tier, non-Real ID, license to be issued for those who are unable or unwilling to meet the identification requirements. Undocumented drivers or drivers opting out of Real ID would be issued a driving-only license with a clear mark on the front of the license indicating it is a non-Real ID license. The California proposal will not change the immigration status of applicants receiving the driving-only license.
“SB 60 is a pragmatic policy that will ensure all drivers are trained and licensed making our roads and highways safer. It’s also a national security tool for our law enforcement agencies,” remarked Cedillo. “The CA Real ID is supported by public safety, law enforcement and community stakeholders as a practical way to license all drivers.”
Christy Wolfe is the Director of Communications in the office of California State Senator Gilbert Cedillo (D – Los Angeles)