Mississippi officials encourage online services for Real ID

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JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV)– The State of Mississippi’s goal is to make sure those who want a Real ID have one by October 1. ​Some people are worried they won’t get the gold star in time to fly with confusion about online services and staffing shortages at DMVs.
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The star is an enhanced security measure on your license. Officials recommend getting it early ahead of October 1. ​
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The Real ID is something you need if you want to fly unless you have other TSA-approved identification like a passport. ​The Mississippi Department of Public of Safety has been pushing the online process, but some Mississippians have questions about those services. DPS wants you to know what to do for a renewal license.​

​”What you have to know is if you are going to renew your license you have to be inside six months of the date of renewal,” said Captain Odis Easterling, the DPS Deputy Director of Administrative Operations. “If it’s not within six months of renewal then you have to request a duplicate license.” ​

Captain Easterling says that online service and wait anywhere, which allows you to schedule an appointment, has dramatically reduced wait times inside DMVs. ​
There are still personnel shortages. ​

“We’ve been actively recruiting since July,” said Capt. Easterling. “Since we’ve been able to hire for those 54 vacancies that we have. We’re at 23 strong right now as far as new hires go, we have about 8 in the process of being hired. And we’ll be reaching another 23 to make 54.” ​

October 1 is quickly approaching.

Reporter: Do you think you’ll get everyone through who wants to by that October date? ​
​”We are working hard to do so,” said Capt. Easterling. “Those who want it have been able to get it and that’s our goal to make it available.” ​
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Real ID is aimed at fighting terrorism and cutting down on identity fraud.

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