(ALBANY, NY) Senator Dale M. Volker (R-C-I, Depew) today announced that the New York State Senate today passed a bill (S.2272), that provides for additional penalties for convictions of drunk or drugged driving where a child under the age of 17 is a passenger.
"We all know what devastation can occur when someone gets behind the wheel of a car after consuming adult beverages irresponsibly," said Senator Dale M. Volker. "To expose innocent children to this reckless and illegal behavior is completely unacceptable and we need to come down hard on those who put our children at risk of being killed, severely injured or sustain traumatic physical and mental scarring. This legislation is needed and I urge the State Assembly to act upon our bill as soon as possible in order to better protect the public and our children."
The additional penalties include: an additional fine of between $200-$500 with an additional 48-hours of imprisonment for the first offense; an additional fine of between $400-$1,000 with an additional 10 days of imprisonment for the second offense; and an additional fine of between $1,000-$5,000 and an additional term of imprisonment of between 30-90 days for any subsequent offense.
Drunk driving with a child in the car is reckless and by most standards, constitutes neglect or even abuse. Since the early 1990s, at least 27 states have passed laws to expand protection for children and punish drunk drivers who put them at risk. This legislation is modeled after similar legislation in California that has proven to be extremely effective in keeping children safe from drunk drivers.