New Jersey to roll out upgraded REAL IDs by summer 2019

News 12 Digital is highlighting the most-viewed stories of 2018 as part of our 'News 12's Most-Viewed' series. This story on the REAL ID program was originally posted on Sept. 14. Original story below.
New Jersey residents who wish to use their driver’s license as their form of photo identification to board a domestic flight will have to switch over to a new form of identification known as REAL ID by 2020.
Congress passed a law in 2005 requiring new standards for driver’s licenses for identification to gain access to federal buildings, airports, and other locations. This was done in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks.
New Jersey has filed for extensions to become REAL ID-compliant, but the head of the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission says that the new IDs should be ready by the second quarter of 2019.
“One of the advantages of being a little bit later than other states is we’ve been able to learn from their issues and their challenges,” says MVC chief administrator Sue Fulton. “Everybody who’s launched REAL ID experiences a dramatic spike in volume in the agencies."
Federal guidelines will require all states to be compliant by 2020. Everyone will be required to get a new ID, which could lead to long lines at the MVC.
“What we are going to do is reduce our volume in advance of REAL ID, instead of waiting until we have blocks and blocks of lines of people like other states have had,’ Fulton says.
Fulton says that the MVC is already making upgrades to online services to prepare for the expected crowds of people who need to upgrade their licenses.