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Veteran ID, Voter Info Measures One Stop From House Floor

Nick Evans

The official start of the 2018 legislative session may be months off, but some measures are already nearing the home stretch.  A veteran’s ID measure and a bill allowing Florida to share voter information with other states are just one stop away from the House floor.

The ID measure would give Florida vets the option to purchase a ten dollar identification card for proof of military service.  Polk County Republican Representative Neil Combee is backing the proposal.

“The card can be used anytime for proof of service is needed for military discounts at stores and businesses, as well as any discounts or fee waivers the state of Florida offers our veterans,” Combee explains.    

“Currently there are active duty and reserve cards, retiree cards and VA-issued ID cards for those with a qualifying service connected disability rating,” he goes on, “however there is no official government issued veteran ID card that covers all veterans.”

Combee says Virginia and Delaware already offer similar cards.  An identical bill passed the House unanimously last year, but failed to gain traction in the Senate. 

The House panel that approved the veterans ID bill is also advancing an interstate voter registration proposal.  Brandon Republican Ross Spano says the bill allows Florida’s top election official to work with other states.

“The purpose of which is to simply exchange voter registration information to ensure that the voter registration rolls in the various states around the country are accurate,” Spano says.

Spano’s bill explicitly prohibits the state joining a program operated by the federal government or on its behalf.  Recent reporting from ProPublica has pointed to security concerns in a federal database meant to fight voter fraud.

Nick Evans came to Tallahassee to pursue a masters in communications at Florida State University. He graduated in 2014, but not before picking up an internship at WFSU. While he worked on his degree Nick moved from intern, to part-timer, to full-time reporter. Before moving to Tallahassee, Nick lived in and around the San Francisco Bay Area for 15 years. He listens to far too many podcasts and is a die-hard 49ers football fan. When Nick’s not at work he likes to cook, play music and read.