Privacy

Privacy Concerns Lead Missouri Lawmakers To Strip Funds from Department of Revenue

The department was scanning and storing private documents

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ST. LOUIS — The Missouri Senate followed through with its threat of slashing the Department of Revenue budget by completely eliminating funding for the driver's license bureau in a budget proposal passed Monday night.

That plan would ax 37 full-time positions in the DOR's license division in a $3.5 million cut. The trims also include a reduction of $7 million in DOR administrative costs, $9 million from the computer technology division of the Office of Administration and another $20 million from the Department of Public Safety administration.

The way Republican senators see it, all of these departments had a hand in invading citizens' privacy. The budget includes $2 million for a sheriffs' task force to oversee producing conceal carry permits, stripping that duty from DOR.

Some lawmakers are incensed with the revenue department for its new practice of scanning and maintaining copies of important documents of state residents, such as passports and birth certificates, when they obtain a state driver's license. Concealed carry weapon certificates were also a part of the practice until Gov. Jay Nixon ordered the DOR to cease that practice last week.