Vermont, Washington prepare for land, sea border law requiring IDs

| 8/23/2007

U.S. state governments near the Canadian border are preparing for implementation of a new law in January requiring residents to show proof of citizenship when re-entering the country by land.

Beginning on Jan. 31, 2008, the U.S. will begin enforcing the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, requiring Canadian and U.S. citizens to present a WHTI-compliant document or photo ID and proof of citizenship before entering the U.S.

This week, DHS announced that Vermont’s proposal to add an enhanced driver’s license for residents that apply and qualify for use as re-entry documentation at U.S. land and sea ports.

Washington also has worked with the Department of Homeland Security to provide residents with an alternative to requiring birth certificates at the border.

Governments in Canada also are helping residents find alternatives to WHTI.

The province of Ontario recently implemented a voluntary program to incorporate citizenship information onto residents’ driver’s licenses.