Schlossberg wants Pa. to comply with federal REAL ID law

HARRISBURG, Jan. 11 – Rep. Mike Schlossberg, D-Lehigh, said Pennsylvania should work to comply with the federal REAL ID law.

Before Schlossberg joined the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in 2013, the legislature enacted Act 38 of 2012, which said “Neither the governor nor the Department of Transportation or any other commonwealth agency shall participate in the REAL ID Act of 2005 or regulations promulgated thereafter.”

“I understand the intent of Act 38. That said, it needs to be repealed. If it isn’t, Pennsylvanians will not be able to use Pennsylvania-issued identification to access federal buildings as of Jan. 30, 2017, or board airplanes for domestic flights effective Jan. 22, 2018. This presents clear obstacles in travel for business and pleasure and to access federal facilities which require identification,” Schlossberg said.

The federal REAL ID Act of 2005 was established by Congress and signed by President George W. Bush on recommendation by the 9/11 Commission after the Sept. 11 attacks.

“It recognizes state-issued identification without proper safeguards and vetting to verify identity presents a risk from foreign terrorists and domestic criminals. It was intended to make it more difficult to assume new identities, which safeguards against identity theft and fraud.

"I have signed onto legislation to repeal Act 38. I will work with my colleagues to work toward its passage, and I'm looking forward to working with PennDOT and Transportation Secretary Leslie Richards to discuss the quickest way Pennsylvania can come into compliance with REAL ID. For the sake of Pennsylvanians who travel, and for national security and public safety reasons, I hope we bring this matter to a vote so PennDOT can take all steps necessary to comply with REAL ID," Schlossberg said.