ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - The State of Alaska is seeking donations from the public so that some rural Alaska communities can sign up for a Real ID card.
Department of Administration Commissioner Kelly Tshibaka says that a rural outreach program is in the works but uncertainty over funding has prompted the Alaska Department of Motor Vehicles to solicit donations from the public in order to move forward.
"We have DMV employees who are willing to travel out to our rural villages and communities in order to give rural Alaskans their Real IDs so they can be compliant with these requirements," she said.
During a Monday afternoon press conference at Ted Stevens International Airport, the commissioner urged the public to donate money to the DMV, as the one-of-a-kind "mobile" Real ID machine is already in working order, but the money is still needed to get willing DMV representatives out to the communities in question.
"What we need is about $60,000 dollars in travel funds in order to do that," Tshibaka said. "We have about 100 communities that we are looking to visit in 8 different regions. We can do that for $60,000 dollars, so, if you want to give, we'd love to see that happen."
KTUU requested more information on the DMV's call for donations and received a response that those interested in making donations can do so at the nearest DMV location, or by mailing a check to 1300 W. Benson Boulevard, Anchorage, AK 99503.
TSA says to get in early
The Transportation Security Administration and the State of Alaska are asking Alaskans to get their Read ID as soon as possible - more than nine months ahead of the deadline to be in compliance with Real ID standards - as the Department of Administration forecasts three to four-hour-long wait times at DMV locations this summer.
Real ID cards will become the new standard of identification at TSA checkpoints on October 1, 2020. After that date, a normal driver's license will no longer qualify as valid identification for airline passengers. The new rules come as a result of the "Real ID Act," which was passed by Congress in 2005.
A Real ID-compliant cards cost $20 more than a regular license or ID. This means a driver or motorcycle license will cost $40, and a commercial license will cost $120. State identification cards cost $35.
There are options for travelers who forgo the process to become Real ID compliant. A passport book will get passengers through TSA checkpoints and onto both domestic and international flights. A passport card can be used for domestic flights and at border crossings between the United States, Mexico, Canada, Bermuda and the Caribbean Islands.
Other alternative forms of identification that will still be accepted after October 1, 2020 can be found HERE.
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