The Michigan House today approved a plan by state Rep. Ryan Berman to provide a state identification card at no cost to any Michigan citizen.
“People need photo ID for so many essential and recreational purposes,” said Berman, of Commerce Township. “By making state ID cards free, we can ensure everyone in our state has easy access to valid proof of identity and the services that require it. At the same time, we can simplify the process and remove the stigma for those already eligible for a free ID.”
A $10 fee is currently required to obtain or renew a state personal identification card. The fee is waived for some individuals, such as for seniors of at least 65 years old, veterans, people who are legally blind, homeless individuals, participants in the state family independence program, or people on state or federal disability support.
Berman’s House Bill 5007 would make a state ID card free for any Michigan citizen. The plan would not change who is eligible for a state ID or the documentation necessary to prove one’s identity when applying. The existing fee structure would remain in place for driver’s licenses and for duplicate ID cards.
HB 5007 now advances to the Senate for consideration.
State Rep. Ryan Berman, of Commerce Township, today issued the following statement after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer vetoed his plan to provide free photo identification so Michigan citizens can vote securely and easily:
“Michigan citizens deserve accessible, secure elections. We should guarantee free photo identification for each voter to cast a secure ballot, but Gov. Whitmer vetoed my plan to increase voter access and election integrity.”
After Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced a plan supposedly to help law enforcement, state Rep. Ryan Berman said her proposal was a similar, but weaker version of a plan Berman and fellow representatives proposed earlier this year.