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State Senate agrees to raise fine for drivers texting or on phone

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

San Jose Mercury News

A bill that would increase the cost of using a handheld cellphone or texting while driving to about $309 passed the state Senate on Monday and is headed to the Assembly.

“Good, good,” motorist Anna Fields of Sunnyvale said. “Anything to make these drivers on their phones understand the risks they are taking and the danger they pose to me and everyone else is badly needed.”

SB 28 by state Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, passed by a 24-12 vote. It would make a second offense a moving violation and raise the base fine from $20 to $50 per violation. With various fees, a first offense would cost $309, up from the current $208. A repeat offender could be fined $100, or $528 with fees.

View the full story (San Jose Mercury News)