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Why are Missouri Lawmakers So Angry At Department of Revenue?

Why are Missouri Lawmakers So Angry At Department of Revenue?

DOR Director Brian Long, and Deputy Director John Mollenkamp, have repeatedly denied any federal dollars involved in the new controversial Driver and non-Driver licensing system.  However, the following documents outlines not one, two, or three, – but at least four annual grants DOR has received from the Department of Homeland Security and the Department’s efforts to participate neck & neck with other States in implementing REAL ID “compliance”, while claiming they are not breaking Missouri’s Statutory law making it a criminal offense to participate in the implementation of the 2005 federal Real ID Act (see 302.183 RSMo).

Also note that DOR is violating two additional State Statutes:

Missouri’s Concealed Carry Law has always been maintained to protect citizens’ information to the highest degree possible.  To accommodate law enforcement background checks and keep a balanced approach to protecting citizens from any form of firearms registry, Chapter 571. RSMo prohibits anyone from compiling or accessing information that is limited to local county sheriffs.  DOR’s new procedures have created a significant affront to the gun rights community by violating these laws.

While citing 32.090 as authority to scan source documents, they fail to point anyone to the very next provision which does in fact limit DOR’s practice by expressly prohibiting the collecting of individually identifying information on citizens without specific statutory authority.  (Which has never been given.)

32.091.7. The department of revenue shall not collect from persons applying for any driver’s license issued by the department any information by which such persons can be individually identified, unless the department has specific statutory authorization to collect such information; nor shall the department of revenue include on any driver’s license, in print, magnetic, digital, or any other format, any information by which an individual may be identified, unless the department has specific statutory authorization to include such information.

Here are two revealing documents exposing the financial and compliance reporting relationship between Missouri DOR and the National Homeland Security.  DOR heads have dodged, skirted, danced, avoided, and ignored multiple questions about their involvement with Homeland Security.  To quote multiple lawmakers, “they have outright lied to the Legislature and they have lied to the citizens of Missouri”!  Please take time to examine these documents.

One document is a 20 page report from the Center on Immigration Studies (identifies at least two federal grants in the amounts of $700,00+ and $2.99+ million);  http://missourifamilynetwork.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/real-id-2012.pdf

and the second, a 35 page document, is a 2012 Congressional Report from the Department of Homeland Security (specifying the uses of four DHS grants 2008-2011), expose DOR’s secretive and unethical pattern of lies and deceitfulness;  http://missourifamilynetwork.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/real-id.pdf

The 2012 Congressional Report from the Department of Homeland Security was produced by the DHS (U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security) and compiled from States’ reports to DHS on their respective States’ transition to REAL ID.   It is important to note that the Missouri Department of Revenue has obviously participated in making progress reports to DHS, while at the same time pretending to the citizens of Missouri in general, and more specifically withholding the truth about their efforts from State Lawmakers!

Here is a simple rundown on many of the details you will find in the 2012 DHS report document:  http://missourifamilynetwork.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/real-id.pdf

  • Page 3 outlines the 18 “Material Compliance Benchmarks” DHS has established to standardize, federalize, and create a uniform national ID system known as REAL ID.
  • Page 7 charts the 50 States and additional Territories based on their number of “benchmarks” met.  Missouri DOR reports 15 out of 18 “benchmarks” were compliant before last fall (2012).
  • Also on Page 7-8 is a point made that DHS annual Grants (originally denied by DOR) go back to 2008 – making at least 4-5 grants to date from DHS to Missouri DOR.
  • Pages 9-11 explains Missouri DOR’s 15 “benchmarks” in comparison to the other States and Territories.
  • Pages 11-12 shows that the three “benchmarks” not reported to be in compliance with, was not even required to be reported on. (Thus having the least known reported compliance!)
  • (Based on the lack of required reporting, no one but secretive DOR agents has any real idea if in fact Missouri is in compliance or not.)
  • Page 15, paragraph 3,  (last two sentences) makes it clear the Missouri DOR can use grants while claiming they are not participating in REAL ID directly, as long as they are moving that way.
  • Page 17 explains the planned basic “infrastructure” for data networking and sharing, despite DOR’s insistence to the contrary.  (Raises MAJOR concerns about scanned documents security.)
  • Page 20 clearly states that Missouri DOR has signed a “Memorandum of Agreement”, “as required by the REAL ID Act” of 2005.  (Which DOR claimed not to be doing.)
  • Page 22 plainly reports that the “DHS is funding the instillation of the EVVE (Electronic Verification of Vital Events) network interface.
  • Page 23 shows that according to MO DOR’s report, Missouri is in fact “on-line with EVVE.
  • Page 27 “Assistance to States” says “DHS is using “multiple mechanisms” to provide assistance…” to States “intended to meet or “be comparable to”, REAL ID requirements”.
  • Page 27 also defines how DHS accepts State’s “Compliance Determinations.   (States are not required to meet or exceed REAL ID regulatory requirements as long s they are “comparable”.

Lies?:  For at least 4-5 years The Missouri Department of Revenue has been deceitful and has employed various tactics to mislead members of the State General Assembly and the citizens of Missouri!

Over the last month we have uncovered a pattern of documented lies which cast a dark cloud of distrust and angst over the agency.  Clear-cut and documented lies include (but not limited to):

–          DOR repeated claims that it has not received any federal funding for the new “enhanced” or “secure” driver license and non-driver license cards (including CCW endorsements).

–          DOR now admits that they have received “limited federal funding for minor items” (expensive hole punches), when in fact DOR has received millions for extensive REAL ID compliance.

–          DOR has created the illusion that recent controversial revelations are relatively new – when annual grants from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) go back to 2008 (at least).

–          DOR repeatedly claimed they are not working to implement ”Real ID” when in fact DOR now spin admissions that they are doing so “on our own” not ”with” the federal government.

–          DOR maintains claims that they are not working with the National Department of Homeland Security, when DOR is reporting to DHS their “benchmark” compliance reports.

–          DOR had reported to original inquiries from lawmakers that no data on Missouri citizens was being sent out of state – when in fact DOR now admits is the daily procedure.

–          DOR has responded to concerned inquiries from lawmakers, via email, that all data being sent out of state is deleted – when in fact they now admit no verification protocol exist.

–          DOR first stated to many lawmakers that all Missouri citizens’ personal ID information (scanned source documents) are being destroyed – now admitting it is being stored permanently.

–          DOR has emphatically stated over and over that biometric data cameras and photos are not being taken/used – but now have testified under oath that this is in fact the new procedure.

–          DOR has led everyone to believe the old processing equipment was in need of replacing, but has now admitted that the equipment was working just fine with normal repairs.

–          DOR claims the only reasons for upgrading equipment has been for citizens security, but now admits equipment upgrades are driven by “compliance” with the national REAL ID Act.

–          DOR says they are not implementing REAL ID under federal control (a clear violation of State law) but now admits voluntarily enacting all required “benchmarks” to be “compliant”.

–          DOR claims to have Statutory authority for the new controversial program being implemented, but only points to a provision in the state budget (which has no Statutory authority).

DOR’s Most Comprehensive Response To Date (that we know of) Still Fails to Address The Bulk Of Concerns And Questions

From DOR:

“The Department of Revenue receives information related to the license and the card.  The protection of this information is controlled by the Driver’s Privacy Protection Act (Sections 32.090 and 32.091, RSMo).  With these protections in mind, several years ago the Department began working in a system that is both cost effective and able to ensure that information remains confidential.  The changes in the driver license and the issuance process are being put in place to protect Missouri citizens from criminals who want to obtain or produce forged copies of the licenses and identification cards to steal or manufacture identities.

 “In conjunction with the Office of Administration, and through the state purchasing procedures, the Department has signed a contract with a vendor to both replace some aging equipment and to issue secure licenses and identification cards to Missouri citizens.  The contract is between the state of Missouri and the vendor—no other entity mandated this contract.  Furthermore, the vendor does not receive any scanned source documents.  The vendor only receives data that is printed on the license itself, such as name, address, sex, height, weight, etc., and deletes the data one week after the document is printed. 

 “To specifically address some of the concerns, the license does not include any radio frequency identification (RFID) chip; the license does not include a magnetic strip; and no information is being transmitted to Homeland Security or any other federal agency.   The license and identification cards, however, include two bar codes.  The purpose of these barcodes is specifically explained on the Department’s website: one contains the same information as appears on the front of the card along with the county of residence of the license holder and the second is for inventory control only.

 “For more information, you may go to the Department of Revenue New Missouri Driver Licenses and Nondriver Identification Cards frequently asked questions at http://dor.mo.gov/faq/drivers/newlook.php

We are striving to discern the facts surrounding this DOR controversy.  While many unsubstantiated claims have been made against DOR, it is apparent that the teams installing the new processing equipment in local license offices around the State had been providing confusing answers to LLO personnel’s questions.  Perhaps these people have assumed everything in Missouri was the same as in other states installing REAL ID systems, not aware that Missouri is only “complying”?  Whatever the case behind some of the false understandings, we do know that DOR has not been willing to  be forthcoming with either the citizens, local license offices, or even the General Assembly.  We apologize for any information we have distributed that is incorrect and renew our commitment to report facts and clarify unknowns as outstanding questions.

In response to two confused issues:  Originally, LLO personnel had been instructed to change past procedures of “flagging” questionable or suspected individuals processing driver licenses.  The new procedure was to automatically identify all persons using USPS Post Office address as potential “fraud alerts”.  This practice was dropped within two days after this controversial story emerged.  The second issue is that originally all local license offices were provided an access code to gain entry to the data base of scanned documents (managed by Oracle, the private vendor contracted to manage this database).  Once criticisms of potential security risks came to light, DOR cut off LLO access to this database.  (The database has not been destroyed or deleted as some reports claimed.)

As far as we understand at this point:  MorphoTrust USA is the private vendor processing Missouri driver license cards.  They receive at least (?) the “folio” files on Missouri citizens seeking driver license cards.  The company is based in New Jersey (?) but their processing facility is located in Atlanta, GA.  (L1 is an older DOR contract vendor that was acquired by Identity Solutions.  Identity Solutions was later acquired by MorphoTrust USA.  Various equipment bares any of these three names.)  MorphoTrust USA is a SAFRAN company, and SAFRAN is a huge international business based out of Paris, France.  The second private vendor with DOR is Oracle, which is charged with the maintaining the platforms for the database containing all the scanned source documents.  (Both companies are represented by lobbyist Richard McIntosh, listed by the Missouri Times as number 12 on the 20 most influential individuals with the Nixon Administration.) (?)

One of many questions that has not yet been adequately aired is, “why are citizens not told their documents are to be scanned before they know what is happening”?  We have heard from hundreds of angry citizens and they all share the same opening to their stories, that they were never told until afterwards (and only then when asking questions) that their documents were scanned.  No one has yet to report that they were ever given an option to cancel or pause the transaction until they understood what would occur!

Thank you for your service to the Great State of Missouri.