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Oregon must comply with Real ID Act by 2018, or residents can't board airplanes

Oregon has not been complying with the federal Real ID Act for the last 12 years. If the state does not change its IDs before January, residents will not be able to access federal buildings, including airports. (SBG photo)

SALEM, Ore. – If you plan on traveling by airplane in 2018, you might not be able to get through airport security with only your state ID.

Oregon-issued driver’s licenses do not comply with federal regulations. But a senate bill in progress could enforce a change.

When congress passed the Real ID Act 12 years ago, it set strict guidelines for states to meet when issuing driver’s licenses that would be accepted for federal purposes – like air travel.

The Oregon legislature passed a bill that said it wasn’t going to use state funds to enforce the Real ID Act in 2007.

So, Oregon has put off changing its IDs for over a decade.

Now, if Oregonians don’t have Real IDs by July 10, 2017, people will be limited from federal buildings like nuclear facilities and military bases.

“The first affect is that you would need additional ID to get into military bases and military facilities,” said David House, Oregon DMV public information officer.

And airport security will be limited too by January 2018.

“Transportation security administration is going to require a Real ID compliant ID to get on domestic air travel,” House said.

Sen. Bill Hansell said the state and federal government were in a financial standoff, until now with Senate Bill 374.

Oregon Senate Bill 374 passed through the Senate Monday, and it could help Oregon join 24 other states that meet the Real ID standard.

“This bill repeals the previous bill, up to this point ODOT or we haven't been able to spend a penny on any Real ID activity,” Hansell said.

“We just don't have any guess how many people would want the real ID compliant option,” House said.

Under bill 374 the Real ID is a voluntary option.

The Oregon DMV said current state IDs are given a thorough background check, but Hansell said he hopes to see Real IDs soon in Oregon.

The bill will head to the house as early as Friday and then to the governor’s desk.

If it passes, Oregon can apply for an extension with Homeland Security that would allow current IDs to be accepted at the airport.

The DMV said they will be ready to issue real IDs by July 2020.

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