NYAMA Board Calls for Clarity from TSA on Airport Checkpoint Regulations

ALBANY, NY (09/29/2015)(readMedia)-- The Board of Directors of the New York Aviation Management Association (NYAMA) today called on federal officials to clarify its directive that will require enhanced security features in New York State driver licenses used by as identification by travelers at airport security checkpoints.

The Real ID Act, which has been enforced in stages since it was enacted in 2005, requires identification accepted by the federal government to contain certain security features that currently are not used in standard driver licenses issued by New York State and three other states. Several recent published and broadcast reports documented that the implementation of the final phase of the Real ID Act – for boarding federally regulated commercial aircraft – is set to take effect "no earlier than 2016," according to guidelines published by the U.S. Transportation Security Administration.

Some airports in New York State have received verbal assurances from their local TSA representatives that no changes to current regulations are planned or expected, but no clear policy for the implementation of the final phase of the Real ID Act has been established in Washington.

"Despite the alarming headlines, we want to assure air travelers from New York State that their state-issued driver licenses will continue to be accepted at all U.S. airport checkpoints, including every airport in the Empire State," said Jeremy P. Martelle, President of the New York Aviation Management Association. "We are aware that the Real ID Act phase that applies to airport checkpoints is scheduled to take effect as soon as next year, but that's an important qualification, because it does not necessarily indicate the implementation will take place in 2016. We are seeking greater clarity on the matter, but until we receive further direction from Washington, travelers should continue to fly without any concern about the validity of their New York state-issued driver's licenses as acceptable identification."

NYAMA is a non-profit association of aviation professionals with members from New York State airports, State government agencies, planning boards, consultants, engineers, equipment manufacturers, and education facilities. NYAMA is devoted to promoting airport development and representing the needs of the entire aviation industry.