Maryland’s governor and transportation secretary have announced that they will seek legislation to change the state’s long-standing policy on driver’s license registration and require proof of legal residence before issuing the cards to state residents. Maryland is hoping to make this change as it begins implementing the federal REAL ID national identification system. The governor had rejected a previous proposal for a two-tier system that would have allowed the issuance of a lower-tier license to individuals unwilling to show such proof.
According to the Maryland Motor Vehicle Association’s site, REAL ID implementation means that. “Effective January 1, 2010, individuals applying for a new license will be required to show documentation to prove that they are in the United States legally.” Driver’s license applicants will have to show “Documents such as Social Security Card, U.S. Birth Certificate, U.S. Naturalization of Citizenship, Valid U.S. Passport, Valid Foreign Passport with Visa, U.S. Permanent Residency Card” or other documents to prove their legal presence in the United States.
We have previously detailed the many privacy and security problems that arise from requiring such documentation for a state driver’s license, but let’s focus on the immigration issue that Maryland is attempting to address. Read More