JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones said Thursday he will be "fast-tracking" newly proposed legislation that would bar copying of birth certificates and other personal documents needed for a driver's license.
Attention to the handling of such documents comes after a lawsuit was filed in southeastern Missouri by a man who sought to update his driver's license to include an endorsement to carry a concealed weapon. According to the lawsuit filed in Stoddard County, Eric Griffin was told at the local license office his application, birth certificate and documents to prove his residency would be scanned and saved in the Department of Revenue's system.
The lawsuit was announced during a news conference at the state Capitol attended by Jones and Republican Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder. Stoddard County Prosecutor Russell Oliver is Griffin's private attorney for the case.
Legislation proposed this week in the House would prohibit the Department of Revenue from retaining copies of documents presented by people seeking a driver's license and from using technology to capture a digital image of them. The Revenue Department would have until Sept. 11 to destroy documents that have been obtained.
The Department of Revenue recently changed Missouri driver's licenses and the process for issuing them to reduce risk for identity theft and fraud. Changes began at local license offices in December and are being rolled out at about 15 offices each week. The new procedure also calls for licenses to be mailed.