COLONIE, N.Y. (NEWS10) – New Yorkers will need more than a drivers license to get through airport security beginning in 2016.
The new security rules are part of a law that has already passed. It’s part of a counter terrorism measure that passed in 2005. But most travelers don’t know about it.
“No, not at all,” Benjamin Fisher, of Cambridge, said. “Not until you just mentioned it.”
The policy impacts domestic flyers and requires more forms of identification to get through TSA security checkpoints. Other forms of accepted ID include a birth certificate or passport.
“Why would you need to have all that to get on a plane,” Fisher wondered. “Some people travel every day. Why would they have to bring all that with them?”
According to Frank Merola of the Renssealer County DMV, New York is one of a few states where a drivers license did not make the security cut.
“So just to get on a plane, train, anything, you would need more additional identification,” he said.
Other states have what’s called Real IDs, but New York IDs don’t have enough security features.
“We have submitted a request for an extension to the REAL ID Act and our discussions with the Department of Homeland Security have been very productive,” Casey McNulty with the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles told News 10. “We have no reason to believe that any New Yorker will have a problem using their current state-issued ID card to get on a plane come January 2016.”
“Since 2008, New York has offered enhanced driver licenses, or EDLs, which are REAL ID complaint, McNulty said. “They fulfill the needs of those who want the enhanced features without raising the cost of having a license for others who don’t need it.”
“You’d have to have that Real ID compliant, and what that is is on the driver’s license, there’s a star up in the right hand corner,” Merola explained.
A release date has not been announced as to when the new rules will begin, but the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said it will let people know and inform them about the change. More information about Real IDs can be found on the DHS website, here.
No signs about the security change were posted in Albany International Airport on Tuesday.
UPDATE: New York State Enhanced Licenses are considered Border Crossing Cards by the TSA and Homeland Security. These cards will be acceptable for travel.