House Bill 2847 would expand the conditions allowed for a conditional license permit to include cases where a drunk driver must drive to school or vocational training, must drive to get personal medical or dental care, or to assist in the care of another person who is unable to drive. It also clarifies when a conditional license permit is permissible for certain commercial drivers.
“I have asked the Governor to veto this bill. Every exception to our license revocation laws weakens it,” said Representative Cynthia Thielen. “What is the sense of implementing an ignition interlock program or mandating tougher penalties for driving under the influence if we enact giant loopholes like this?”
Last Friday, Governor Lingle signed the ignition interlock bill as Act 171. However, this Act will not prevent unnecessary DUI deaths for two years.
According to statistics provided by the State Administrative Driver’s License Revocation Office, in 2007 there were 6,345 cases of driving under the influence, and administrative license revocation cases processed. 1,146 were repeat offenders. 2,424 hearings for conditional license permits were concluded, and 990 conditional license permits were granted at hearings, or 40.8% of all hearings ended up in a conditional license permit being issued.
All House Republicans and four House Democrats voted against the bill. The Governor has until June 23rd to notify the Legislature of bills she intends to veto.