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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Nels Pierson (R)

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RELEASE: Rep. Nels Pierson Statement on REAL ID Bill

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

ST. PAUL – Members of the Minnesota House of Representatives approved legislation that would allow Minnesota to prepare for the implementation of REAL ID. State Representative Nels Pierson, R-Rochester, voted in favor of the measure.

“Because our area is home to the Rochester International Airport, it’s important to ensure residents can board airplanes free of worry about their identification cards’ legitimacy,” said Pierson. “By passing this bill, Minnesota starts down the road to federal conformity.”

In January, the Department of Homeland Security told Minnesota it had until 2018 to develop REAL ID-compliant licenses in order for residents to board an airplane. Currently Minnesota's licenses do not comply with the federal REAL ID Act.

Minnesota had previously approved a law barring Minnesota's Department of Public Safety (DPS) from even discussing REAL ID compliance with Homeland Security. The measure approved by the House recently would eliminate that ban and allow the process to begin.

“If there’s one thing to remember it’s that there’s no reason to worry about boarding an airplane,” said Pierson. “We’re working with the state to ensure your travel plans don’t get disrupted.”