Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Continues REAL ID Efforts
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) is using $4 million in additional federal grant funding to assist with preparations for complying with the REAL ID Act of 2005. The new grant is called the Fiscal Year 2008 REAL ID Vital Events Verifications State Project Grant.
The REAL ID Act, which was enacted into law in May 2005, was intended to enhance the security of the nation by improving the protections that guard against the issuance of fraudulent identity documents. REAL ID also established the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as the sole agency responsible for setting REAL ID requirements and technical specifications and established May 2008 as the effective date for REAL ID's new requirements to officially take effect.
Verification of vital events records, especially individual birth records, is a basic requirement all states must meet before issuing a REAL ID driver’s license or ID card. The REAL ID Vital Events Verification State Project Grant will improve the ability of states to verify birth record information. KYTC is using the additional REAL ID grant to conduct a proof-of-concept for a birth record verification process utilizing a Web-based software application.
States will be able to request funding from KYTC to establish the connectivity that will allow them to verify birth records presented by applicants for driver’s licenses and ID cards. This grant program will assist states to both submit and respond to requests for verification of birth records by connecting to a Web-based server. Standardizing the method by which all states will verify birth record information will help to establish an integrated systems approach for verification purposes and is a key objective of the grant.
The REAL ID Vital Events Verifications State Project Grant is one of three REAL ID funding opportunities offered by DHS, totaling $38.3 million, to enhance state driver’s license and ID card issuance capabilities. The $38.3 million total includes this State Project Grant; a REAL ID pilot project already underway in Kentucky to test a birth records verification software tool; and a separate demonstration grant program to pay for verification systems enhancements eligible to all states.
The purpose of the REAL ID grant program is to improve intra- and inter-state personal identity information verification systems. By improving the verification of birth record information, the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Grant Programs Directorate utilizes integral REAL ID funding to achieve comprehensive REAL ID implementation across state lines.
More information about the Fiscal Year 2008 Real ID Vital Events State Project Grant is available here.