PASS ID may have evaded the label of "unfunded mandate", but the fiscal breakdown is the same. States will still pay to construct identity data surveillance hubs to insecurely network government records across the nation. PASS ID knocked off some attributes which originally drove States mad to push out Real ID - massive unfunded mandatory projects to be footed by States. This time States can opt-in and test the programs first. Try it, before you buy it. There is nothing in the newer legislation, S.1261, to stop expenses of digital project scope creep from expanding incrementally for years to come once States are on the hook. Unfortunately, scope creep is a problem currently plaguing existing Real ID digital network management, increasing expenses.
States today do not yet have a full recognition of what Real ID will cost or what is fully required from them to build a national identity data aggregate or infrastructure. Local governments remain hesitant because DHS is still settling matters of how to both afford and competently network the IT behemoth. The plan to "kick the can", started underneath the Bush administration, has eroded DHS credibility to enforce a national ID deadline. States know DHS issued comprehensive blanket waivers on Real ID compliance measures.
This week 8 states "choked" the compliance game of chicken, some issuing letters defying Real ID regulations going into 2010. That is exactly what was done by States to address the last DHS deadline, March 31st, 2008. Based on previous results, DHS is expected to issue blanket waivers to all 50 States to continue Real ID development.