While a handful of Texas lawmakers agree that the state needs to be tougher on drunk drivers, there are a number of disagreements regarding how the laws should change and how those convicted of DWIs should be punished. The result of the disagreements was another year without passing any new DWI laws; in fact, this year the proposed DWI laws did not even make it out of committee.
Dallas Representative Stefani Carter, who lost two uncles in a drunk driving accident, attempted to pass a bill that would revoke the driver’s license of a five-time repeat DUI offender for ten years. At the same time, Senator Jane Nelson of Flower Mound proposed a bill that would revoke the license of anyone who drives drunk twice. The second bill did not survive the Senate Criminal Justice Committee. Opponents to the bill argue that while new laws involving Interlock devices or sobriety checkpoints could help reduce the number of drunk drivers, tougher punishments for repeat offenders who likely have addiction issues would not solve the problem.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving gave the Texas lawmakers a “D” grade when it came to their work to reduce drinking and driving accidents this year – but also said that they would rather see laws regarding Interlock systems and sobriety checkpoints than laws about revoking licenses.