Gov. Tom Wolf plans to sign a bill that pushes Pennsylvania toward complying with a federal law that requires people to prove they are legal U.S. residents in order for their driver's licenses to be valid for federal purposes.
The state Senate voted Tuesday 49-1 to approve Bill 133 directing state government to comply with the 2005 Real ID law. The bill, sponsored by Westmoreland County Republican Kim Ward, still requires House approval.
"This bill achieves the primary goal of allowing Pennsylvania commuters and businesses to avoid disruptions related to noncompliance," Wolf's office said in a statement Wednesday.
"I want to thank Senator Ward and her colleagues for their cooperation with PennDOT and my administration to ensure Pennsylvania can comply with the federal REAL ID law," Wolf said. "I am hopeful that the House will not make further changes and I can sign this bill in its current form when it reaches my desk."
Residents wouldn't be forced to obtain a so-called Real ID, and the bill would allow the Department of Transportation to continue producing driver's licenses and photo identification cards that don't meet the heightened standard.
Pennsylvania faces a June 6 deadline to become compliant for Pennsylvania licenses to be acceptable IDs to get into federal facilities, such as military bases. Next year, Real ID's heightened standards kick in for people boarding commercial airliners.
About half the states are compliant.