The process of making it easier for Oklahomans to renew a driver's license after it expires took a step forward with passage of legislation in the House of Representatives Tuesday.

House Bill 1082, authored by Rep. Pat Ownbey (R-Ardmore) will allow an expired license to be used as proof to obtain a new license for up to a year. Currently, Oklahomans have 30 days after their license expires to renew the license. After 30 days, a birth certificate must be used.

"Like most laws enacted by the Legislation, the one that required birth certificates to obtain a license needed tweaking," Ownbey said. "The original intent of that law was to prevent fraud, but it unnecessarily created a hardship for individuals who had already proven who they were but simply needed to renew their license after it had expired. My legislation addresses this oversight by allowing individuals with an expired license more time to renew their license without the use of a birth certificate."

Legislation also removes a provision that requires the Department of Public Safety to store surrendered licenses. The provision will save the agency money and time, Ownbey said.