Beginning next month, driver’s licenses in Washington state will be changing. Regular licenses and ID cards will be marked with the words “federal limits apply.” Oregon is going down this path too, but not until mid-2020.
After years of resistance, Washington, Oregon and other holdout states are coming in line with stricter federal driver’s license security standards—called REAL ID for short.
Washington needs a two-tier system because policymakers previously decided the state will not verify immigration status before issuing a regular driver’s license. Oregon will similarly offer a traditional license and a federally-compliant ID, but for a different reason; so drivers don’t have to bring in a pile of documents to prove identity and citizenship every time they renew.
Washington Department of Licensing’s Beau Perschbacher said you’ll need the more expensive REAL ID-compliant license to get into some federal facilities or go through airport security by late 2020.
“Know your options,” Perschbacher said. “Start thinking about REAL ID now, before you’re at that point where you can’t get on a plane.”
“The key point is domestic air travel,” Perschbacher continued. “Where this really affects people’s lives is that starting in October 2020, when the enforcement will begin for TSA, you can no longer get on a plane for a domestic flight with a standard driver’s license or ID card. You will not be able to make it through that security checkpoint of TSA.”
“Some of the less common other areas where you would need a REAL ID-compliant document would be access to certain secure federal facilities like a military base, and finally, access to nuclear power plants,” Perschbacher said.
A passport, military ID, or an enhanced driver’s license are alternatives that meet the approval of the federal Homeland Security Department and TSA.
Standard driver’s licenses can continue to be used for driving, as identification in business contexts, applying for federal benefits and at post offices, among other uses.
Regular Washington state driver’s licenses issued after July 1 will have the “federal limits apply” disclaimer. Regular licenses and ID cards cost $54 and last six years. The state’s current enhanced driver’s license, which costs $78 for six years, complies with federal REAL ID requirements. You must be a U.S. citizen to apply for it.
Oregon DMV spokesman David House said Oregon plans to switch to a two-tier driver’s license system in mid-2020 in conjunction with a planned computer upgrade. He said the state’s REAL ID-compliant cards will cost extra, but how much extra has yet to be determined.
Oregon DMV offices verify the legal residency status of license applicants. Oregon voters soundly rejected the idea of issuing alternative driver’s licenses and state identification cards to undocumented immigrants in 2014 when the issue was placed on the ballot via a citizen referendum.
Both Oregon and Washington state are planning extensive publicity and outreach campaigns to educate people about the most appropriate license options.
Washington Department of Licensing takes steps to comply with Real ID Act
New marking to be added to all standard-issue driver licenses and ID cards
Olympia – Starting July 1, 2018, the Department of Licensing (DOL) will begin marking all standard driver licenses and ID cards with the language, “federal limits apply.” The change aims to bring Washington into compliance with the federal Real ID Act, which requires all states to mark identification documents that do not comply with the federal law. Under Legislation signed (app.leg.wa.gov) by Gov. Jay Inslee, DOL expects to be in full compliance with the REAL ID Act by fall 2018.
Over the next two years, all Washington residents will have to make a choice about their identity documents. By October 1, 2020, standard driver licenses and ID cards will no longer be an acceptable form of identification for boarding domestic flights and entering some secure federal facilities, like military bases and nuclear power plants. DOL’s enhanced driver licenses (EDLs) and enhanced ID (EIDs) cards are Real ID compliant, and valid for travel as are passports, permanent resident cards and military IDs.
Standard driver license and ID cards can continue to be used for the following:
- Applying for or receiving federal benefits
- Entering a federal facility that does not require ID (post office)
An enhanced driver license or ID card is completely voluntary and optional. Some commonly needed documents to get and EDL/EID are certified birth certificate, U.S. passport or military ID. A full list of document options to obtain an enhanced driver license or ID card is available on the DOL website.
“If you know you will not be flying or already have a federally approved document such as a U.S. passport, passport card or military ID, you do not need an enhanced driver license or ID card,” said DOL Director Pat Kohler. “There is plenty of time to educate yourself on all options and choose the identification that works best for you.”
For a full list of federally accepted documents and information about REAL ID and what it means for Washington, visit the DOL website.
PORTLAND, Ore. — Portland police acting on a tip discovered 16 people working in a marijuana-processing warehouse that investigators believe to be illegal.
Sgt. Chris Burley said Tuesday that documents provided to investigators showed the marijuana was being grown for several patients under the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program.
Burley says program guidelines would allow the operation to have up to 30 mature plants. Officers seized 500 plants weighing a total of 3,000 pounds.
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) –
Oregon Liquor Control Commission inspectors are teaming up to combat sex trafficking in the Portland area.
The OLCC’s public safety program regulates businesses in the alcohol and marijuana industry across the state. That program gives inspectors unique access to bars, restaurants, strip clubs and convenience stores.
Businesses they now view as potential hubs for sex trafficking.
“It’s also occurring in businesses with temporary sales licenses, large sporting events, concerts and in the marijuana industry,” said OLCC Marijuana Regulatory Specialist Amanda Standiford. “We’re hearing about it more in the marijuana grows, there’s lots of labor coming in and it’s happening all over the state.”
Standiford is one of those state inspectors now doing her part to understand how traffickers operate and how best to identify potential victims any time she does a check on a business.
“We’re the regulatory body that has the authority to go into licensed establishments. They put their license on the line if they’re denying us access to their business, so we’re kind of the first front that can go into these places, see what’s going on and report back to police,” she added.
Standiford is one of dozens of state inspectors that sat in on a sex trafficking training in Clackamas back in August. The training, led by guest speaker Nita Belles, focused on the warning signs of illegal activity and how to recognize the signs that someone is being trafficked.
“They have the power to get into places that other can’t, to find victims and help them find freedom,” said Belles.
Belles is an author and managing director of the nonprofit In Our Backyard. She works across the nation raising awareness about sex trafficking.
“All traffickers ask of us is one thing, and that is that we remain silent,” said Belles. “What I want people to take away from this is, let’s not be quiet about it.”
The OLCC is now asking businesses to voluntarily place special stickers in bathroom stalls with a phone number where victims of sex trafficking can call and get help. They consider the bathroom a safe place for victims to go without handlers following them in.
If those stickers are damaged, inspectors say they take that as a sign they’ve potentially identified a problem spot.
“If they’re getting scratched off that’s an indication people are trying to stop the outreach effort,” said Standiford. “So, as part of our checks, I check the bathroom and ask to see if they still have their stickers. If they’re damaged I offer new ones.”
Together, they all hope to take what they learn at the conference and apply it to their daily duties out in the field.
For more information go to inourbackyard.org.
Copyright 2017 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.
Portland’s Jeffrey Morgenthaler!
Jeffrey Morgenthaler is a gentleman and a scholar.
At least that’s the opinion of his drinks-industry peers, who named the Clyde Common bar manager both America’s Bartender of the Year and the country’s Best Cocktail & Spirits Writer at the 2016 Spirited Awards. Read more below at Oregon Live or check out his web page at jeffreymorgenthaler.com.