Bill proposes electronic drivers licenses

Bill proposes electronic drivers licenses

Some Louisiana drivers were quick to offer opinions when we asked them about a proposed electronic driver's licenses.

This morning, April Maness said "I mean everything else is going towards technology and our smart phones, I think it would be a great asset to have."

Here's how it would work, drivers could install an app from the State Department of Motor Vehicles on their smartphone, then pay a small fee, no more than $5 to download a digital copy of their license.

Everyone wasn't excited about the idea of ditching the wallet for a smart phone. "When I go to the cell phone store I have to tell the man to act like I'm 90 years old and explain it to me," Sandra Darensbourg said. "I know nothing about cell phones."

"What if your cell phone is broke and it breaks and police pull you over, how you going to show them your driver's license?" Mike Gangi said. "It doesn't make sense, unless they'll be able to pull it up and make sure it's you."

There are restrictions. Citizens would only be able to use the technology as a license to drive.  It would not grant access into buildings that require proof of ID or into bars. You also would not be able to use the electronic ID to purchase items such as cigarettes, lottery tickets or alcoholic beverages. The electronic license would be Real ID compliant, but it would be up to the TSA to allow you to use them at airports.

Some drivers have security concerns. April Maness would use the technology, but says "Personally, I would just want to make sure that app if it's created would just be able to protect my identity. There's a lot of things you can do with someone's license if you had it."

Representative Ted James from Baton Rouge sponsored the bill and said that Louisiana would be the first state to adopt the technology.

The house overwhelmingly passed the bill yesterday, now it heads to a senate committee.

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