It follows a request by Gov. Hogan and other state governors.
Glen Burnie, Md (KM) The US Department of Homeland Security has agreed to extend the deadline by one year to October 1st, 2021 for Maryland and other states to become REAL ID compliant. The Maryland Department of Transportation says this allows nearly 300,000 state residents the opportunity to become REAL ID compliant through their standard driver’s license renewal process.
“We are glad the decision was made to extend the REAL ID deadline as we continue to focus our time and resources in fighting this pandemic,” said Governor Larry Hogan, in a statement, referring to Maryland’s battle against the coronavirus. “With many services suspended or delayed as a result of COVID-19, this extension will give Marylanders–and citizens across the nation–more time to complete the process once services have returned to normal.”
Governor Hogan made this request to DHS in his capacity as Chairman of the National Governors’ Association.
MDOT says 66% of licensed drivers in the state are REAL ID compliant, which is 3.1-million residents.
“While I appreciate the responsiveness of Marylanders to REAL ID, our top priority is the safety of our customer and employees,” says Motor Vehicle Administrator Chrissy Nizer. “I am grateful to Governor Hogan’ s leadership in advocating for the deadline to be extended and hope the extension will provide some relief during this difficult time.”
The federal REAL ID Act was passed by Congress following the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks. It requires driver’s licenses and identification to be REAL ID complaint so that citizens can board commercial aircraft and gain access to federal buildings.
Governor Hogan has closed all MVA branch offices effective March 20, 2020. But the MVA continues to process emergency business such as commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) to get truck drivers on the road.
Self-service kiosks are available to complete many MVA transactions, such as vehicle registration renewals, changes of address, insurance compliance payments, title replacements, license purchases and replacements, and information on flag fees.
By Kevin McManus