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July 16, 1999

Ryan Signs Tougher DUI Legislation

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today signed four bills that implement tougher penalties for people convicted of drunk driving and provides the Illinois law enforcement community new tools to combat alcohol related violence.

"I am pleased to sign these pieces of legislation into law," Ryan said. "We are implementing tougher blood alcohol concentration levels for school bus drivers, providing new revenue for our law enforcement communities, making it easier for our police to gather DUI information, as well as creating tougher penalties for those who tamper with their ignition interlock devices.

"This legislation will give our law enforcement communities the tools they will need to fight alcohol-related violence, because there is no reason why anyone should get behind the wheel of their car and drive drunk," he said.

House Bill 1871 amends the Illinois Vehicle Code to increase the blood alcohol concentration level for school bus drivers to reflect the current maximum of .08 instead of the former .10. It also imposes a three-year suspension for bus drivers violating the state's DUI standards.

The bill was sponsored by Sen. George Shadid, D-Edwardsville, and Sen. Beverly Fawell, R-Glen Ellyn; and Reps. Jay Hoffman, D-Collinsville; Louis Lang, D-Skokie; Sidney Mathias, R-Buffalo Grove; Timothy Osmond, R-Antioch, and Thomas Holbrook, D-Belleville.

Senate Bill 740 amends the Illinois Vehicle Code. If a person is found guilty of driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs they will be fined $100 in addition to any other fine. The $100 will be distributed to the law enforcement agency that made the arrest to assist in the prevention of alcohol-related criminal violence throughout Illinois. If more than one agency is responsible for the arrest, the $100 will be shared equally.

This legislation was sponsored by Sens. Bradley Burzynski, R-Sycamore; Todd Sieben R-Geneseo; Reps. David Wirsing, R-Sycamore; Gwenn Klingler, R-Springfield; Edgar Lopez, D-Chicago; Edward Acevedo, D-Chicago, and Rep. Hoffman.

Senate Bill 578 amends the Illinois Vehicle Code to provide that hospitals shall disclose to the Department of State Police or local law enforcement agencies the blood alcohol concentration levels of persons involved in alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents.

This legislation was sponsored by Sen. Sieben; Rep. Ronald Lawfer, R-Stockton, and Rep. Mathias.

Senate Bill 1129 amends the Illinois Vehicle Code and the Unified Code of Corrections to allow courts to mandate the use of the device in conjunction with a judicial driving permit for a first-time DUI offender. The act allows the court to require the use of an ignition interlock device when granting court supervision. The new law also makes it illegal to:

  • Blow into an ignition interlock device or to start a motor vehicle equipped with the device for the purpose of providing an operable motor vehicle to a person whose driving privilege is restricted.

  • Tamper with, or circumvent the operation of, an ignition interlock device.

  • Knowingly lease, rent or lend a vehicle without an ignition interlock device to a person required to use such a device.

  • A violation of one of these offenses is punishable by no more than 6 months imprisonment or a fine of not more than $5,000, or both.

    This legislation was sponsored by Sen. Dick Klemm, R-Crystal Lake; Sen. Donne Trotter, D-Chicago; Sen. Lisa Madigan, D-Chicago; Sen. John Cullerton, D-Chicago; and Rep. David Leitch, R-Peoria; Rep. Lovana Jones, D-Chicago; Rep. Jack Franks, D-Woodstock; Rep. Eileen Lyons, R-Western Springs; and Rep. Osmond.

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