By Jeff Harrison
The long wait for REAL ID is over in Midwest City and Del City.
Local tag agencies started issuing the new identification cards last week.
The Department of Public Safety began issuing REAL ID to the public on June 29 at select locations. The agency is gradually expanding availability with a focus on the Oklahoma City and Tulsa metros.
State Sen. Brenda Stanley was first in line at the Midwest City Tag Agency, 119 S. Air Depot Blvd., Thursday afternoon to apply for the REAL ID. It was also made available last week at Del City Tag Agency and Tinker Tag Agency.
“In my mind, I thought it was going to be a big, cumbersome ordeal and it’s not,” said Stanley who represents Midwest City, Del City, and parts of Choctaw and Oklahoma City in District 42. “I think as people become more familiar with it, they will get it.”
The REAL ID application process took about 25 minutes.
Residents are not required to get an Oklahoma REAL ID compliant license or identification card. However, anyone flying domestically or visiting a federal facility or military base after Oct. 1, 2021 must have a REAL ID or other acceptable identification such as a passport.
Citizens must apply for a REAL ID in person at a participating DPS office or tag agency and bring additional documents. Applicants must bring proof of identity (passport or certified birth certificate), proof of social security (social security card or W2) and two proofs of residency (mortgage, lease or utility bill). Anyone who has had a name change for reasons like marriage, divorce or adoption will need to bring in proof of that name change.
After completing the application process at a tag agency, citizens will receive a temporary paper identification card. A card will be mailed in about a week.
Citizens do not have to wait until their registration renewal to get a REAL ID. Tag agencies will continue to offer standard driver’s license and identification cards. The costs are the same for REAL ID and standard identification. A non-commercial, first-time license costs $42.50, a renewal is $38.50 and it is $25 to convert a standard license to a REAL ID or replace a REAL ID.
“Most people are still getting the standard license without showing the extra information, whereas we anticipated a greater number of REAL IDs,” said Jacob Roby with DPS.
The REAL ID Act was passed by Congress in 2005 as a way to enhance security for sources of identification such as a driver’s license. The Act created minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards, and prohibits federal agencies from accepting licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet the standards.
It has taken the federal government 15 years to fully implement the Act due to opposition from several states including Oklahoma. The final deadline was extended by one year due to COVID-19.
All states must be in compliance by Oct. 1, 2021.
Oklahoma and Oregon are the only states that are not fully compliant with the REAL ID Act.
For more information about REAL ID, visit www.realid.ok.gov.