A report from the National Governors Association says states will have
to come up with more than $11 billion to implement the new Real ID Act.
The Washington Post reports the association estimates that 250 million Americans will have to be
re-enrolled for new driver’s licenses and, in some cases, state identification
The Real ID Act, which President Bush signed into law in May 2005, effectively
stops any state from issuing a driver’s license to illegal immigrants. The
measure requires proof that a person is in the country legally before that
person can get a license.
The Act also contains measures that worry privacy advocates. It would
require all licenses to contain certain information – much of which is already
common to driver’s licenses. But it would also require every license to carry a
“common machine-readable technology” – such as a computer chip that would carry
all license information.