The new cards, which carry special markings, will be available in California as of next Jan. 2. But people must apply for them in person at Department of Motor Vehicle offices — not online or by mail.
Judging by the experiences of other states, about 20 million people could apply, the Sacramento Bee reported (http://bit.ly/2r4eZyk).
“When you’re dealing with the number of driver’s licenses we have in California, by definition the numbers are going to be large,” said H.D. Palmer, a spokesman for the state Department of Finance.
Applicants must provide more documentation than currently needed, including a birth certificate or other proof of birth and more proof that they are legal California residents and have a Social Security number.
A California law that took effect two years ago allows people in the country illegally to obtain licenses, but they cannot be used to board airplanes or enter federal facilities.
Brown’s budget would provide $220.6 million to hire up to 715 workers by the 2019/20 fiscal year, fund a marketing campaign about the cards and pay for overtime and other costs of keeping more DMV offices open on Saturdays to meet the demand.
DMV officials said they have been working on Real ID-compliant cards for years. “The DMV has been implementing practices that make our cards some of the best-protected in the country,” spokeswoman Jessica Gonzalez said.