...And Senate Moves To Mandate Photos On Pilot Certificates

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Legislation that would give the FAA six months to issue new pilot certificates with photo ID passed the powerful Senate Commerce Committee on Wednesday and was sent to the full Senate, AOPA said last week. "AOPA has long advocated for such a move but believes that the six-month time frame for implementation is unrealistic," AOPA said in a news release. The bill would require the FAA to assign designees -- most likely aviation medical examiners -- to take official photos. "The task is still a daunting one, and our goal is to make sure that pilots don't face an inconvenience to have their pictures taken," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "The bottom line is that Congress is forcing the FAA's hand on photo-ID pilot certificates, which AOPA believes will be an enhancement." The legislation would provide the FAA with $50 million to develop and implement a photo ID for pilots that is resistant to tampering, alteration and counterfeiting. It would also include biometric data or other unique identifiers to ensure authenticity.