Lanza & Cusick Author Legislation to Require Eye Exams for NY Drivers

Senator Andrew Lanza and Assemblyman Michael Cusick have introduced legislation to require New York’s drivers to pass an eye exam in order to renew their licenses. The legislation is in response to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles’ outrageous plan to eliminate the eye exam requirement.

In an effort to streamline services, the Department of Motor Vehicles announced Wednesday that it would no longer require eye exams for drivers wishing to renew their licenses. DMV unveiled a new Internet application said to shorten waiting times and increase customer service throughout the state. The new system would have allowed drivers to self-certify that they met vision requirements the same way they do with other medical issues.

“While I understand the desire to speed up the renewal process, we should not be jeopardizing the safety of our drivers to clear up the lines at DMV,” said Senator Lanza.  “Our roads are already full of dangerous drivers who speed, eat and text while driving. This ill-conceived policy would have added vision-impaired motorists to that list of hazards.”

"We need to do all we can to ensure an atmosphere that is safe for our motorists,” said Assemblyman Michael Cusick. “This bill is a common sense measure that will work to achieve those ends.”

“New York State has over 11 millions drivers on the road,” said Lanza. “If just two percent of those drivers failed the eye exam, that would translate into hundreds of thousands of seeing-impaired drivers on our roads statewide.”

While news reports say the Cuomo administration will be putting the new policy on hold, Lanza and Cusick are moving forward with their legislation. Lanza appreciates the Governor’s wisdom in reversing this ill-conceived policy but never the less believes he should move forward with the legislation to codify the policy in New York State Law.