Arizona Lawmakers Consider Repeal of DUI Law

Arizona state legislators are pushing a new bill that would repeal a recently approved anti-DUI measure. Just last month Governor Janet Napolitano signed into law legislation requiring that all motorists convicted of Arizona DUI install ignition interlock devices on their vehicles. Now legislators are claiming they had incomplete and even erroneous facts surrounding the impact of interlock devices on drunk driving accident statistics.

Ignition interlock devices prohibit a car from being started until the motorist provides a virtually alcohol free breath sample. They also require periodic tests while the car is in operation to ensure the driver is sober. Arizona law previously required interlock devices after someone had been convicted of multiple DUI offenses or had registered a blood alcohol content in excess of 0.15, also termed extreme drunk driving. The recently passed legislation extended the interlock requirement to everyone convicted of drunk driving, even first time DUI offenders.

During discussion on last month’s bill, statistics citing accident reductions from the installation of interlock devices after a first time DUI were provided by the state of New Mexico. New Mexico is the only other state in the country that requires ignition interlock devices for all DUI offenders. It has since come to light that the statistics on the impact of ignition interlocks covered all DUI arrests as well as other traffic enforcement measures. That dilutes the perceived benefit of mandatory interlock devices for first time offenders.

Opponents also cite reports of mixed results on the ineffectiveness of interlock devices. Others are concerned about motorists who rely solely on the use of a motorcycle. As interlock devices cannot be installed on them, the result would be no form of personal transportation. The high cost of installing and renting an ignition interlock device has also been discussed, with a concern on family budgets.

Gov. Napolitano has said she would veto any measure that relaxes the new DUI law.

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  1. So tell me how a peron who earns 30k a year can possibly pay for court, monitor, etc. Tell me which consitutional rights are being violated, I am only addressing first timers, no injuries, etc.,when the punisment does not fit the crime. Case in point, you have your car impounded and let’s say you do not have $500.00 to get your car released. Your car is auctioned and the money recieved is not applied to the cost of the impound therefore you are still responsible the the impound fees. Try to get a loan for lawyers fees , how does 25% interest sound to you, sounds criminal to me. Many more expamples. Who/where do I start to get AZ. Dui Laws repealed. Why are only low income blacks, white and hispanics being affected by this, makes you wonder doesn’t. Where is the mess do you seen counceling being offered to help cure Alcohalics , you won’t to much money being filtered down to attorney’s . I know of indiviuals who have paid $16 to $20k for first offense , no injuries, etc…What the hell is going on with Az. So now what happens when someone looses their job, how will the pay all the associated costs now. Please fill in the blanks. I doubt I will hear from anyone because you know I am right. I am interested in starting a movement/protests to repealed the Az. DUI LAWS. I am only interested in first timers and no property or persons have been injured……….Regards, Don

  2. yvonne hubbard says

    Interlock devices for first time offenders is totally unfair. Yes we made a mistake but as for me i have never even had a traffic or parking ticket and I am being catagorized as a criminal. the interlock device is going to control my life for 18 months. Why not have me go to counseling for those 18 mths. it is because dui’s a a money making tool for everyone from law enforcement to dmv to the interlock compamies to attorneys to the court system and on and on. For first time offenders the punishment does not fit the crime no matter what The laws need to be changed so hard working people are not unduly punishes for a first time offense even if it was extreme. Get people help not jail time