Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Action Item- Virginia HB1559-Delegate Paul Krizek Special Identification Cards for Person 70 Years of Age or Older Has Been Amended by Transportation Committee to Limit Those Who are on the VSP Sex Offender Registry

A bill that originally had nothing to do with Registered Sex Offenders was amended back on 01/16/17 by the House Transportation Committee to include them. 

HB1559- Patroned by Delegate Paul Krizek was originally increasing the fee and extending the time before expiration from 7 to 8 years for Virginia Special Identification Cards (for Person 70 Years of Age or Older who do not have a Driver’s License) under §§ 46.2-333.1 and 46.2-345.  

Then on 01/16/17 the House Transportation Committee amended HB1559 and I was not aware of the change until today but it’s already passed through both chambers.  

The amendment is: 

C. Every special identification card shall expire on the last day of the month of birth of the applicant in years in which the applicant attains an age exactly divisible by five applicant's birthday at the end of the period of years for which a special identification card has been issued. At no time shall any special identification card be issued for less than three nor more than seven eight years, except under the provisions of subsection B of § 46.2-328.1 and except that those cards issued to children under the age of 15 shall expire on the child's sixteenth birthday, thereafter the special identification card may be renewed on or before the last day of the month of birth of the applicant and shall be valid for five years, expiring in the next year in which the applicant's age is exactly divisible by five, except under the provisions of subsection B of § 46.2-328.1. Notwithstanding these limitations, the Commissioner may extend the validity period of an expiring card if (i) the Department is unable to process an application for renewal due to circumstances beyond its control, (ii) the extension has been authorized under a directive from the Governor, and (iii) the card was not issued as a temporary special identification card under the provisions of subsection B of § 46.2-328.1. However, in no event shall the validity period be extended more than 90 days per occurrence of such conditions. Any special identification card issued to a person required to register pursuant to Chapter 9 (§ 9.1-900 et seq.) of Title 9.1 shall expire on the applicant's birthday in years which the applicant attains an age equally divisible by five. For each person required to register pursuant to Chapter 9 of Title 9.1, the Department may not waive the requirement that each such person shall appear for each renewal or the requirement to obtain a photograph in accordance with subsection C of § 46.2-323.

So per this 2017 Bill which has passed through both the Virginia House and Senate and is headed to the Governor to be signed into law……..any 70+ year old Registered Sex Offender who does not have a drivers license and needs a Special Identification Card MUST somehow (they don’t have a drivers license) make it into a DMV location in the month of their 70, 75, 80, 85 and 90 birthdays. Unlike the rest of the senior citizens in Virginia who can renew both online or through the mail and their cards are valid for 8 years.  

This 2017 change is similar to the change made back in 2008 (before I became an advocate) when HB534- Patroned by Delegate Bobby Mathieson (he’s now a U.S. Marshal in Hampton Roads) when the House Transportation Committee increase Virginia Driver’s Licenses lifespan from 5 years to 8 years and to encourage online or postal renewals they added a DMV-location visit fee, EXCEPT if you are on the VSP Sex Offender Registry. Any RSO”S driver’s license is only valid for 5 years and they are required to renew in-person at a DMV location which includes the additional fee.  

In the last 6 years there have been multiple “Sex Offender” Bills or amendments that have gone through the House and Senate Transportation Committees, it seemed like a new theme for them, I will have to do a better job at monitoring those Committees too.  

If anyone wants to join me in asking Governor McAuliffe to amend HB1559 before signing it to allow any Registered Sex Offender who can not drive to submit a letter from their doctor stating this so that they can renew through the postal mail or online I would appreciate it.  

Here is a sample message for anyone unsure of what to ask for.  

Dear Governor McAuliffe,  

2017’s HB1559-Delegate Krizek is headed to your desk.  

The House Transportation Committee added an amendment on January 16th that has remained in the Bill which doesn’t take into account the age, mobility and/or health of those it is directed towards.  

The amendment to section C states that anyone on the Virginia State Police Sex Offender Registry must renew their Special Identification card (for Person 70 Years of Age or older) every 5 years instead of every 8 years AND that they are NOT permitted to do so online OR through the mail.  

These Virginians are 70+ years old and they need these cards because they do NOT drive. Many of them probably don’t make it out much except to the doctor’s office where they would need to show identification along with their Medicare or Insurance card. But the Virginia Legislature has mandated they go in-person to a DMV location to renew their cards AND they’ve decided that it will be valid for 37% less time than other cards.  

I understand that Virginia Drivers Licenses for Registered Sex Offenders also mandate in-person renewal at a DMV location and that they too expire 37% sooner than other Virginians Drivers Licenses, but the citizens who need these Special Identification Cards don’t drive and could be in poor health. This Bill prohibits them from renewing through the US mail or online with the help of a family member, this is truly pointless.  

Please amend HB1559 to allow any VSP Registered Sex Offender who can not drive to submit a letter to DMV from their doctor stating that they are unable to travel to a DMV location every 5 years and allow them to renew either through the mail or online like everyone else.  

Thank you very much.  



Submit your amendment request to the Governor here:

Thank you  

Mary Davye Devoy