Hawaii Proposes Giving Drunk Drivers a Second Chance

The Hawaiian state legislature has passed a bill authorizing the return of driver’s licenses to repeat DUI offenders. The current law calls for the permanent suspension of a license for those who have been convicted of driving under the influence four times in ten years.

According to lawmakers, the new legislation is about giving second chances and allowing a person to be productive in life. A repeat Hawaii DUI offender would be able to re-apply for a driver’s license ten years after its suspension for an alcohol related offense. The driver would also have to maintain a clean driving record. Approximately 1,100 drivers have had their license suspended for life.

Opponents are concerned about relapse in chronic drunk drivers. Governor Linda Lingle has indicated that she will veto the measure though legislators have said they will hold a special session to consider overriding that action.

MADD has not issued an opinion on the bill, opting instead to fight for the mandatory implementation of ignition interlock devices for all DUI offenders

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