The ACLU of Nevada is thrilled to report that the bill to bring Nevada in line with the federal REAL ID Act is dead. Although the Senate voted 12 to 9 on the bill on early Monday, it was not voted on by the Assembly before its adjournment. 

The ACLU lobbied hard against the REAL ID Bill for the following reasons:

  • NEVADA RESOLUTION URGED REPEAL Our 2007 legislature passed AJR6, urging Congress to repeal REAL ID.
  • NO ACCOUNTABILITY TO NEVADA The private association planned to keep and maintain the database is not bound by the Privacy Act or the Drivers’ Privacy Protection Act.
  • GROUNDSWELL OF STATE OPPOSITION Eleven states, including Montana, Arizona, and Idaho, have enacted statutes opting out of the program entirely.
  • FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IS CONSIDERING REPEAL The Heritage Foundation reports that draft legislation repealing REAL ID is circulating in Washington (5/12/09, http://blog.heritage.org/2009/05/12/is-this-for-real/).
  • PRIVACY INTRUSIONS No limitations, guidelines, or security plan has been set for the use, storage, and sharing of the personal information REAL ID would capture.
  • UNFUNDED MANDATE Less than 10% of the $1 billion in start-up funds needed to implement REAL ID has been budgeted for by the federal government.
  • OVERWHELMING COST In 2007, the legislature estimated that implementing REAL ID came with a $30 million price tag for two years; current estimates are still in multiple millions of dollars.
  • REENROLLMENT & TRAINING Nevada DMVs would need to revamp how applications for licenses and renewals are handled, requiring new extensive training as well as additional staff and equipment.
  • INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY OVERHAULS Sweeping changes are needed to Nevada driver’s licenses and administration systems to capture REAL ID’s uniform data elements.
  • CONSTITUTIONAL PROBLEMS A REAL ID will be needed to enter federal buildings, creating problems for due process and the right to petition government officials.
  • UNFIXABLE: The ACLU believes that REAL ID cannot be fixed. Nevada should not be forced to enact a program– at a massive cost– that fails to serve the state’s interests
In the end, all references to "REAL ID" were eliminated from the bill. However, for all practical purposes, the bill is still a very complex and unfunded national ID card proposal with no privacy protections guaranteed for your Nevada constituents.