REAL ID restrictions prevent Tampa man from renewing govt. ID

By Dave Jordan, Reporter
Last Updated: Wednesday, February 14, 2018, 7:44 AM EST

A Tampa man says new federal requirements for REAL ID drivers' licenses are preventing him from renewing his state identification.

David Wheeler applied for and received a non-driver license ID back in 2008. It expired in July of 2017. When he went to renew that ID, the government rejected it.

“It’s been very bad because I can’t get no work,” said Wheeler. “I love to work. I need to make money."

Homeland Security now requires state motor vehicle agencies produce REAL ID-compliant driver licenses and government IDs, per federal law passed in the wake of the September 11th attacks. The measure is said to prevent terrorists from duplicating licenses.

To renew the IDs, states like Florida require an additional level of documentation, such as a birth certificate. Wheeler’s birth certificate lists his gender as his name and because of that, the state rejected it.

The Florida’s Department of Highway and Motor Vehicles reached out to Wheeler after Spectrum Bay News 9 contacted them about his situation.

“We have reached out to the customer and we’re going to make sure he can get everything he needs to renew his credential,” said Alexis Bakofsky, a spokeswoman with the agency.

If you are having problems renewing your license, contact the department at (850) 617-2000.