Flynn unsure when Pulaski will issue new driver's licenses

JS Flynn

"They didn't tell us when we will (get equipment) to issue Kentucky's new, secure driver's licenses," said Pulaski Circuit Clerk J.S. Flynn after spending a day in Frankfort this week training for the new license issuance procedures. Flynn did learn other things about the processes, some of which may be frustrating both for the applicant and the clerk's office.

Starting this year, Kentucky is making significant upgrades to driver's licenses, permits and IDs, and will issue a new Voluntary Travel ID for U.S. air travel. Beginning in October 2020, only people with a Voluntary Travel ID will be allowed to board domestic flights. Anyone who does not have a Voluntary Travel ID will have to show other forms of identification such as a passport to board domestic flights.

Kentucky says the pilot rollout of the new, secure driver's licenses, spearheaded by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, is scheduled to begin in early April in Franklin and Woodford counties. A phased, county-by-county rollout extending to the remaining 118 counties will begin two to three weeks later and conclude within a two-month period.

The county rollout schedule will be announced in early April. ​Citizens may only apply at the circuit court clerk's office in their county of residence. Cards will be mailed to applicants 5 to 10 business days later. A 30-day temporary credential will be issued until the permanent card arrives in the mail.

Pulaski countians, don't worry. If you must renew your driver's license immediately the cost is still $20. Prices for the new Standard or Voluntary Travel ID licenses, when available, will be higher but the cost will be pro-rated, Flynn said.

Procedures for getting a new Standard driver's license will be the same as now," Flynn noted, but application for the new Voluntary Travel ID is going to be a headache for the applicant," Flynn suggested.

"You've got to have a birth certificate, Social Security card and two proofs of residency," Flynn continued. "Your birth certificate and Social Security card must be originals, they can't be photocopies or laminated," Flynn reminded. You must show two proofs of residency such as a utility bill, salary statement, something like that (documents must be less than 61 days old)," Flynn noted.

The circuit clerk also said if your name has been changed legally, that's OK, that'll work, but if changed by marriage, a marriage license is necessary. Flynn suggested those planning to apply for the Voluntary Travel ID should start now by applying to appropriate state or federal agencies for original documents you will need.

Kentucky drivers may choose between two options. One is a Standard driver's license. The other is a Voluntary Travel ID that complies with new federal travel rules. Kentucky drivers must choose between the two options. They cannot have both.

• New drivers must pass a vision, written and skills test to be issued a driver's license.

• No tests are required for persons transferring to Kentucky with valid driving privileges; except persons transferring from foreign countries.

• No testing is required for persons suspended less than one (1) year.

• Eye and written tests are required for drivers suspended for more than one year.

• Any driver suspended or (license) expired for more than five years will start as a new driver.

• All driver testing is performed by Kentucky State Police on scheduled days at circuit court clerk's offices (call for an appointment).

• Pay the required fee. The eight-year cost for a driver's license will be $43 for Standard and $48 for Voluntary Travel ID. The licenses are good for 8 years. Applicants 21 or older may choose an 8-year license or ID, or a 4-year license for half the cost. Beginning spring 2023, all licenses and IDs will be valid 8 years.

• An individual must be at least 16 years of age to apply for a+ permit/license.

• If the applicant is under the age of 18, a parent or legal guardian must sign the Driver's License/Identification Card application form.

• If the applicant is under the age of 18, a School Compliance Verification form from the student's school district must be presented. (reference: No Pass/No Drive Law)

Kentucky state law requires an application for a driver's license to contain the following:

• Applicant's full legal name.

• Applicant's date of birth.

• Applicant's Social Security number.

• Proof of the applicant's Kentucky residency.

• For full legal name and date of birth: birth certificate.

• For Social Security number: Social Security card.

• Foster children are required to bring the Cabinet for Health and Family Services Custody Verification Letter to the circuit clerk's office.

Current Kentucky licenses, permits and IDs are valid until their expiration date, said Matt Henderson, Department of Vehicle Regulation commissioner.