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Kansas City will now give you a municipal ID to get city services and open a bank account

Three windows at a help desk have decals showing people holding a city identification card. A sign above the counter says "Fountain Cards"
Savannah Hawley-Bates
KCUR 89.3
Fountain Cards, Kansas City's municipal identification program, are now available at the city's Health Department.

Kansas City’s Fountain Card, which has fewer requirements than a traditional ID card, will help residents who have issues getting government-issued identification by easing access to water services, library cards, bank accounts and other city programs.

Kansas City residents can now get a Fountain Card, a municipal ID that will help them access city services that usually require traditional forms of identification like a driver’s license or state ID.

The ID is free for all ages and available at the Kansas City Health Department. The card is easier to access than traditional forms of state identification, which require multiple official documents.

Applicants need to prove who they are and that they live in Kansas City, Missouri. However, Mayor Quinton Lucas stressed that the city wants to make sure anyone can get an ID, even without permanent housing or citizenship.

“We know there are many Kansas Citians out there who are working to make their lives better, but it's quite difficult to do anything without a form of identification,” Lucas said. “It's difficult to get a job. You can't open a bank account or fully interact with city services. The Fountain Card unlocks those opportunities today.”

While people can get a Fountain Card using traditional IDs, they can also use other documents like a shelter name band or a school yearbook.

Acceptable forms of identification are:

  • A state-issued driver’s license or identification card
  • A U.S. military identification card that includes a photograph
  • A U.S. passport with current photograph
  • A school identification card or document
  • A work identification card 
A man in a suit sits in a chair in front of a blue background, smiling for a picture. Behind him two people look on and smile
Savannah Hawley-Bates
KCUR 89.3
Mayor Quinton Lucas sits for his Fountain Card photo. The card is available to any Kansas City resident with proof of who they are and where they live.

If applicants don’t have one of the above forms of identification, two of the following forms will be accepted:

  • School yearbook
  • Letter from the government or social service agencies
  • W-2 tax form issued in the last year
  • Court-certified adoption papers
  • Shelter name band
  • Voter registration card
  • Utility bill
  • Canceled duplicate check
  • Military discharge document
  • Medicaid/Medicare document or payroll stub that includes Social Security number
  • Insurance policy
  • Certificate of vehicle registration documents
  • Proof of auto insurance

Acceptable forms of proof of residency are:

  • Credit card bill or statement
  • Insurance bill or policy
  • Housing lease or rental agreement
  • Mortgage or local property tax statement
  • Payroll stub
  • Utility or cable bill
  • Bank statement
  • Voter registration card
  • Proof of a minor enrolled in school
  • Jury summons or court order
  • Original documents from a health or social services organization attesting that the applicant is a Kansas City resident

The Fountain Card program will help cardholders get other forms of identification, like a birth certificate.

Dr. Marvia Jones, director of the Health Department, said the Fountain Card will help more people access city services.

“We think about populations like the houseless, the formerly incarcerated, people who have been involved with the foster care system — all of these are folks who we think will especially benefit,” Jones said. “Access to economic opportunity, to activities of daily life, those are all things that contribute to health.”

The Fountain Card will be valid for 10 years for adults and five years for minors. Cardholders can use it to access city water services, public workers, prescription drug discounts, community centers, library cards, permit services, and recycling and compost services.

The card can also be used to open a bank account at WeDevelopment Credit Union in Kansas City.

The program is expected to cost more than $250,000. Funds will come from the city’s Health Levy Fund. The Fountain Card program was approved in July of 2023.

City officials say more than 100 people have already received their cards. Residents can get their cards at the Health Department during normal business hours.

When news breaks, it can be easy to rely on officials and people in power to get information fast. As KCUR’s general assignment and breaking news reporter, I want to bring you the human faces of the day’s biggest stories. Whether it’s a local shop owner or a worker on the picket line, I want to give you the stories of the real people who are driving change in the Kansas City area. Email me at savannahhawley@kcur.org or follow me on Twitter @savannahhawley.
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