Yesterday morning we renewed our drivers licenses in Sioux Falls, which took about an hour, most of it spent waiting for our numbers to be called. We had called ahead, before we ever left Arizona, to be sure of exactly what we needed to take with us to meet the new criteria established by Homeland Security, and I’m glad we did.
Under the new Federal guidelines, women who are obtaining or renewing a drivers license must present certified documents detailing any and all name changes. Since Terry had been married previously, she needed a certified copy of her first marriage license, a certified copy of the divorce decree, and a certified copy of our marriage license. We obtained the needed copies back when we were in Arizona. We also each needed certified copies of our birth certificates, our original (or replacement) Social Security cards, and a dated receipt from a campground showing that we had spent the previous night in Minnehaha County. The receipt had to have both of our names on it, since we were both renewing our licenses. Much of this documentation can be bypassed if one has a valid passport, but the same paperwork is apparently required to get a passport too.
While we were waiting for our numbers to be called, we watched other fulltime RVers come in who did not have all of the required paperwork, or a campground receipt, and they were turned away. So be prepared before you go. We also had to sign affidavits that once we stop traveling fulltime, we intended to settle in South Dakota.
Once we got our licenses renewed, we walked over to the Sheriff’s Office to inquire about renewing our concealed weapons permits. When we got the permits several years ago, all we had to do was fax the paperwork to the Sheriff’s Office, then stop in a few days later to pick them up. But not anymore. The lady at the desk said we must be in the county 30 consecutive days and nights and have campground receipts to prove it to be able to renew. She said to be careful not to stay at the campground in Tea, which is just over the county line and does not qualify. I’ll pass, my Arizona non-resident CCW permit is good in more states anyway.
I’m beginning to rethink my feeling that South Dakota is friendly to fulltime RVers. I didn’t like the fact that when we bought our Explorer a couple of winters ago, we had to pay a full year’s registration fees, even though it came up for renewal again in August. Back then I asked why they didn’t prorate the license fee, and the lady I talked to in Sioux Falls simply said, “Because we don’t.” It kind of ticks me off that, besides paying our license fees, and registration fees on our car and RV, and sales tax when we purchased them, that we also have to spend money on a campground just to renew our licenses and permits. It feels like extortion. The hoops the Feds make us jump through is bad enough, but to say we must stay in a campground and have a receipt just to renew licenses or permits is nothing more than a shakedown.
We have been talking about where we might settle down if and when we ever stop fulltiming. We like the Titusville, Florida a lot and it is easier for us to get to than South Dakota in our routine travels. There is an excellent mail forwarding service in Green Cove Springs and another in Pensacola. I think we’ll be looking at this issue in depth when we get down to the Sunshine State this winter.
Thought For The Day – Some days the supply of available curse words is insufficient to meet my demands.