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REAL ID appointments 'already booked through May'

Posted at 7:21 PM, Mar 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-02 19:21:56-05

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — The Oct. 1 deadline when travelers will need a REAL ID to board commercial flights and enter federal buildings looms. And it’s being felt in places like Palm Beach County where there are three-hour waits and bookings into May at Tax Collector’s Offices.

“I lost my license at the airport - Newark Airport and now I need to get a new license,” said Regina Gaudreau.

If you talk to the people waiting in line at the Central Palm Beach Service Center with Gaudreau they'll tell you it's a long wait regardless of circumstance.

“It’s still a two-and-a-half hour wait before they open - so it’s pretty crazy,” said Michael Robinson.

“It is what it is I mean everyone is you know scrambling,” added Gaudrau.

The REAL ID Act of 2005 was passed by Congress and developed by the Department of Homeland Security to help fight terrorism and reduce fraud. In Palm Beach County, REAL ID’s require visits to the Tax Collector's Office.

“Appointments for March, April and most of May are already booked,” said Anne M. Gannon, Constitutional Tax Collector for Palm Beach County in a statement. “We are now scheduling appointments in June, which is only four short months ahead of the REAL ID deadline of Oct. 1, 2020.”

Gannon also reminds the public they cannot get their REAL ID driver license or state ID card online and must visit a tax collector office with required documentation that provides proof of identity and residence. As of Feb. 7, approximately 102,000 residents still need a REAL ID. People who do not have a REAL ID must present an alternate acceptable form of identification, such as a valid U.S. passport, to be allowed through security.

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