HB1966 Changes intoxication related offenses.
Sponsor: Hosmer, Craig (138) Effective Date:00/00/0000
CoSponsor: Skaggs, Bill (31) LR Number: 4036L.03C
Last Action: COMMITTEE: CRIMINAL LAW
03/01/2000 - HCS Reported Do Pass (H)
HCS HB 1966
Next Hearing:Hearing not scheduled
Calendar:HOUSE BILLS FOR PERFECTION
Position on Calendar:017
ACTIONS HEARINGS CALENDAR
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Available Bill Summaries for HB1966 Copyright(c)
* Committee * Introduced

Available Bill Text for HB1966
* Committee * Introduced *

BILL SUMMARIES

COMMITTEE

HCS HB 1966 -- BLOOD ALCOHOL CONTENT VIOLATIONS

SPONSOR:  Hosmer

COMMITTEE ACTION:  Voted "do pass" by the Committee on Criminal
Law by a vote of 12 to 4.

This substitute makes a number of changes to statutes regarding
blood alcohol content traffic violations.

In its main provisions, the substitute:

(1)  Changes the blood alcohol content (BAC) level necessary for
a conviction of driving with excessive BAC to .08.  Currently,
the BAC for this violation is .10 (Section 577.012, RSMo).  The
substitute also requires the license of an offender of this
provision to be suspended for 90 days, an increase from the
current 30-day suspension (Section 302.304);

(2)  Increases the penalty for driving while intoxicated from a
class B misdemeanor to a class A misdemeanor for the first
offense.  The substitute also deletes the provision allowing a
suspended imposition of sentence for driving while intoxicated
if the offender receives probation (Section 577.010);

(3)  Creates the crime of "aggravated driving with excessive
blood alcohol content," which is the operation of a motor
vehicle with a BAC of .15.  The penalties are a class D felony
for the first offense, a class C felony for the second offense,
and a class B felony for the third and subsequent offenses
(Section 577.015).  No limited driving privileges are available
(Section 302.309);

(4)  Makes it an infraction for any person to consume or possess
an open alcoholic beverage in a motor vehicle.  Currently, it is
a violation only to consume alcoholic beverages while operating
a motor vehicle (Section 577.017);

(5)  Creates the "dangerous persistent offender" category of
driver, who has previously been found guilty of either
involuntary manslaughter, certain types of assault, or 4 or more
intoxication-related traffic offenses.  This is a class A felony
(Section 577.023);

(6)  Changes the definition of "persistent offender" to include
offenders who have been found guilty of 3 or more intoxication--
related offenses at any time.  Persistent offenders are guilty
of a class B felony.  Currently, these offenders must have been
found guilty of 2 or more intoxication-related offenses in 10
years, and it is a class D felony (Section 577.023);

(7)  Changes the definition of "prior offender" to apply to
persons previously convicted of 2 violations at any time, and
increases the penalty to a class C felony.  Currently, prior
offenders are guilty of a class A misdemeanor if the offense is
committed twice in 5 years (Section 577.023);

(8)  Requires 10 days imprisonment as a condition of parole for
prior, persistent, or dangerous persistent offenders, unless the
offender performs at least 60 days community service (Section
577.023);

(9)  Creates the "repeat offender" category of offenders, which
includes persons who have been found guilty of one intoxication--
related traffic offense.  Repeat offenders are guilty of a class
D felony.  The substitute requires a minimum of 5 days
imprisonment as a condition of parole for repeat offenders,
unless as a condition of parole, the offender performs 30 days
community service (Section 577.023);

(10)  Repeals provisions allowing the expungement of alcohol--
related driving offense records (Section 577.054);

(11)  Increases the penalties for operating a vessel while
intoxicated to a class A misdemeanor for a first violation, a
class D felony for a second violation, and a class C felony for
the third and subsequent violations.  Currently, it is a class B
misdemeanor for a first violation, a class A misdemeanor for a
second violation, and a class D felony for the third and
subsequent violations (Section 306.111);

(12)  Lowers the BAC for operating a vessel with excessive BAC
from .10 to .08 and increases the penalty to a class A
misdemeanor for the first violation and a class D felony for the
second and subsequent violations.  Currently, it is a class B
misdemeanor for the first violation, a class A misdemeanor for
the second violation, and a class D felony for the third and
subsequent violations (Section 306.112); and

(13)  Deletes provisions relating to ignition interlock devices
and replaces them with provisions that allow a court to either
require ignition interlock devices or impound or immobilize all
vehicles owned and operated by an offender found guilty of a
second or subsequent intoxication-related offense (Sections
577.600, 577.700).

FISCAL NOTE:  Cost to General Revenue Fund of Unknown to exceed
$100,000 in FY 2001, FY 2002, and FY 2003.  Estimated Net Income
to Highway Fund of $28,095 in FY 2001, and $74,567 in FY 2002
and  FY 2003.

PROPONENTS:  Supporters say that impairment has been shown at
levels that are much lower than current law reflects.  Taking
additional measures to strengthen intoxication-related offenses
will reduce the number of drunk drivers.  In addition, Missouri
is risking federal incentive funds and having other funding
redistributed if it fails to adopt provisions in compliance with
federal standards.

Testifying for the bill were Representative Hosmer; Gary
Kempker, Director, Department of Public Safety; Highway Patrol;
Joyce Marshall, Director, Division of Highway Safety; Department
of Transportation; Mothers Against Drunk Driving; and Missouri
Water Patrol.

OPPONENTS:  Those who oppose the bill say that incidents of
drunk driving are declining, which can be attributed to a
variety of responsible drinking programs.  Opponents also say
that the majority of accidents are caused by drinkers with very
high BAC levels and repeat offenders, which should be the focus
of the bill.  Opponents say that the penalties for repeat,
persistent, and prior offenders are too severe, since the
penalties can apply for any subsequent offense, without regard
to the number of years between offenses.  Opponents also say
that the ban on open containers of alcohol should apply only to
the driver, not other passengers in a vehicle.

Testifying against the bill were Missouri Beer Wholesalers
Association; Missouri Association of Beverage Retailers;
Anheuser Busch, Inc.; and Missouri Restaurant Association.

Sarah Madden, Legislative Analyst


INTRODUCED

HB 1966 -- Blood Alcohol Content Violations

Co-Sponsors:  Hosmer, Skaggs, Gaskill, Schilling, Williams
(121), Sallee, Barnett, Kelley (47), Relford

This bill makes a number of changes to statutes regarding blood
alcohol content traffic violations.

In its main provisions, the bill:

(1)  Changes the blood alcohol content (BAC) level necessary for
a conviction of driving with excessive BAC to .08.  Currently,
the BAC for this violation is .10 (Section 577.012, RSMo).  The
bill also requires the license of an offender of this provision
to be suspended for 90 days, an increase from the current 30-day
suspension (Section 302.304);

(2)  Increases the penalty for driving while intoxicated from a
class B misdemeanor to a class A misdemeanor for the first
offense.  The bill also deletes the provision allowing a
suspended imposition of sentence for driving while intoxicated
if the offender receives probation (Section 577.010);

(3)  Creates the crime of "aggravated driving with excessive
blood alcohol content," which is the operation of a motor
vehicle with a BAC of .15.  The penalties are a class D felony
for the first offense, a class C felony for the second offense,
a class B felony for the third offense, and a class A felony for
the fourth and subsequent offenses (Section 577.015).  No
limited driving privileges are available (Section 302.309);

(4)  Makes it an infraction for any person to consume or possess
an open alcoholic beverage in a motor vehicle.  Currently, it is
a violation only to consume alcoholic beverages while operating
a motor vehicle (Section 577.017);

(5)  Creates the "dangerous persistent offender" category of
driver, who has previously been found guilty of either
involuntary manslaughter, certain types of assault, or 4 or more
intoxication-related traffic offenses.  This is a class A felony
(Section 577.023);

(6)  Changes the definition of "persistent offender" to include
offenders who have been found guilty of 3 or more intoxication--
related offenses in 10 years.  Persistent offenders are guilty
of a class B felony.  Currently, these offenders must have been
found guilty of only 2 or more intoxication-related offenses in
10 years, and it is a class D felony (Section 577.023);

(7)  Increases the number of violations necessary to be
considered a "prior offender" from one to 2 intoxication-related
offense in 5 years, which is a class C felony.  Currently, prior
offenders are guilty of a class A misdemeanor (Section 577.023);

(8)  Creates the "repeat offender" category of offenders, which
includes persons who have been found guilty of one intoxication--
related traffic offense.  Repeat offenders are guilty of a class
D felony (Section 577.023);

(9)  Repeals provisions allowing the expungement of alcohol--
related driving offense records (Section 577.054);

(10)  Expands the waterways included in violations relating to
operation of water vessels to also cover the waters of
Missouri.  Currently, the waterways only include the Mississippi
River, the Missouri River, and the lakes of the state (Section
306.111);

(11)  Increases the penalties for operating a vessel while
intoxicated to a class A misdemeanor for a first violation, a
class D felony for a second violation, a class C felony for a
third violation, a class B felony for a fourth violation, and a
class A felony for a fifth and subsequent violation.  Currently,
it is a class B misdemeanor for a first violation, a class A
misdemeanor for a second violation, and a class D felony for a
third and subsequent violation (Section 306.111);

(12)  Creates the crime of operating a vessel at night while
intoxicated, which is a class D felony for the first conviction,
a class C felony for the second conviction, a class B felony for
the third conviction, and a class A felony for the fourth and
subsequent convictions (Section 306.111);

(13)  Lowers the BAC for operating a vessel with excessive BAC
from .10 to .08 and increases the penalty to a class A
misdemeanor for the first violation and a class D felony for the
second and subsequent violations.  Currently, it is a class B
misdemeanor for the first violation, a class A misdemeanor for
the second violation, and a class D felony for the third and
subsequent violations (Section 306.112); and

(14)  Adds a third level of penalties to involuntary
manslaughter by dividing it into first, second, and third degree
offenses.  Involuntary manslaughter in the first degree includes
causing the death of another while operating a vehicle or boat
in an intoxicated condition.  Involuntary manslaughter in the
first degree is increased from a class C to a class B felony.
Involuntary manslaughter in the second degree is committed when
a person recklessly causes the death of another and is a class C
felony.  Involuntary manslaughter in the third degree is acting
with criminal negligence to cause the death of another, a class
D felony (Section 565.024).


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