By TOM CALLIS
Tribune-Herald staff writer
Hawaii County is adding new positions at its Hilo and Kona driver’s license offices this month as it prepares to handle new responsibilities.
As of Wednesday, the county will begin issuing state identification cards for the first time.
The cards act as official government identification for people who may not drive and don’t have a driver’s license.
The job has been previously left up to the state Attorney General’s Office, which processed them through a downtown Honolulu office and at governor’s liaison offices around the state.
The cards will now be processed at county driver’s license offices.
The new positions — one in Kona, the other in Hilo — are paid for by the state, said county spokesman T. Ilihia Gionson.
Each are expected to be able to handle 7,000 identification cards a year, he said.
The amount issued each year varies widely.
Gionson said the state issued 8,962 cards on the Big Island in fiscal year 2012 (July 2011-June 30, 2012).
In fiscal year 2011, the state issued 86,832 cards, with 15,481 cards on the island, according to the state Attorney General’s Office.
Gionson said the range could be due to how many cards are set to expire in the year.
The new positions will start the second week of the month, he said, adding the county isn’t expecting other duties in the offices to be impacted.
“Like anything else, we won’t really know until we open up the doors and folks come in,” Gionson said.
Current fees for state IDs are $20, $15 for people 65 and older. Documents required to obtain state IDs are similar to those documents required to obtain a driver license. These requirements can be viewed at: http://hawaii.gov/dot/hawaiistateid.
The cards can be received at 349 Kapiolani St., Hilo or 74-5044 Ane Keohokalole Hwy, Kona.
For additional information, contact the driver license offices in Hilo or Kona by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 961-2222.
Email Tom Callis at email@example.com.