New York City announced the official launch of its municipal ID program yesterday during an event led by Mayor Bill de Blasio. The municipal ID program will allow residents of New York City to get a localized ID card that will be accepted in hospitals, libraries and other public institutions. The program is designed to provide greater mobility to residents that may not have traditional documentation. Municipal IDs are also available to residents with state issued ID cards, and will also offer admission to local museums and other points of interest.
Municipal IDs will be available fore residents of all five boroughs that make up the New York City metro area.
In addition to providing valid identification for hospital visits, the cards will also be accepted at local banks for opening checking and savings accounts. The ID will also be accepted by the New York Police Department for the purposes of issuing summonses or desk appearance tickets in lieu of arrest, and has been incorporated into the NYPD Patrol Guide. City officials noted at the event that there are plans to further expand the program in the future.
“Today, we are launching the most ambitious, dynamic and useful municipal ID program in the country,” Mayor de Blasio said at the event.
All City residents age 14 and above are eligible to get a municipal ID card, and enrollment is free for anyone who applies in 2015. The City has established 17 permanent enrollment centers throughout the five boroughs, 11 of which are open to the general public. The City has also opened six enrollment centers for City agency clients in the Department of Probation and the Human Resources Administration. The 18th permanent public enrollment center will open in the spring, and two mobile locations will launch later in January.
With the launch, New York City has the largest municipal ID program in the US. A handful of other large cities including San Francisco and Oakland, California also have municipal ID programs.