Tougher Drunk Driving Bill Dies in House

March 7 2007, 8:58 PM

Last week I wrote about a bill to increase penalties for drunk driving introduced by Rep. Joel Judd. Today, the bill was rejected by a vote of 7 to 4, by Colorado's House Judiciary Committee.

House Bill 1189 (pdf) would have increased the number of sobriety checkpoints that are conducted in Colorado. It also would have mandated interlock ignition devices for persons convicted of DUIs. Those devices prevent drivers from operating motor vehicles when they've had too much to drink. Under the bill, first offenders would have been required to use those devices for a year. Second offenders would have been required to use them for four years.

But that's not all. As the Rocky Mountain News informed us in an editorial

First-time offenders would lose their licenses for at least five years, and multiple offenders for 20 - unless they satisified other requirements....

The prime objection to the bill today seemed to be the expense. It would have cost Colorado taxpayers an estimated $3 million. I don't think we need the draconian penalties either.

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