Millions of Californians Still Need Real IDs From DMV

Long wait times at California DMVs have been a problem for many people just trying to get their simple tasks done. It seems the wait times got even worse once the introduction of the Real ID was announced, which will be required to have by October 1, 2020 if a person would like to board a domestic flight without a passport. 

The program has issued 1.5 million Real ID cards since its' implementation in January. However, millions of Californians have yet to come in to a DMV for the new card, resulting in an estimated 23.5 million that still need to be issued. 

DMVs across the state are worried the wait times will continue to increase in the coming months as people come in for the IDs. 

At a committee hearing at the Capitol Thursday, stunned Sen. Ben Allen of Santa Monica said, 

“It doesn’t appear to me we’re anywhere near on track. I’m just worried about the chaos that may ensue. … There’s this huge cloud out there of getting from 1.5 million to 25 million in the course of two years.”

In response to the high number of Californians who still need their Real ID, the agency requested the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to extend the Real ID deadline but the request was denied.  

Lawmakers recently approved nearly $17 million in additional funding to hire hundreds more staff and expand hours at field offices. 

Photo: Getty Images

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