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Pa. House passes Real ID bill, Governor Wolf says he’ll sign it

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HARRISBURG, Pa.–Pennsylvania lawmakers approved a bill designed to comply with federal law that requires people to prove they are legal U.S. residents in order for their driver’s license to be valid for federal purposes.

The House voted Wednesday 190 to 1 to pass the Real ID bill.  The bill gives residents the option to obtain a driver’s license or other ID that meet rules of a 2005 federal law enacted in response to the Sept. 11 terror attacks. There’s also an option for a noncompliant, traditional driver’s license or ID.

The measure overturns a 2012 state law that kept the state from complying based on concerns regarding cost, constitutionality and government intrusiveness.

Governor Tom Wolf says he’ll sign it. He issued the following statement:

“I want to thank Senator Ward and her colleagues for their cooperation with PennDOT and my administration to ensure Pennsylvania can comply with the federal REAL ID law. I am hopeful that the House will not make further changes and I can sign this bill in its current form when it reaches my desk.”

“This bill achieves the primary goal of allowing Pennsylvania commuters and businesses to avoid disruptions related to noncompliance.”

“Once the 2012 noncompliance law is repealed, PennDOT can begin working with the federal government to update its systems to complete compliance. We will work diligently to ensure the process is as consumer friendly and affordable as possible.”

Pennsylvania faces a June 6 deadline to become compliant for entry into federal facilities. Next year, Real ID’s heightened standards kick in for people boarding commercial airliners.