Thursday, July 18, 2013

Governor Inslee set to sign into law tougher DUI measures this Thurs

The much anticipated change in DUI laws, depending on where you stand, is about to become official this Thurs.  Governor Inslee will sign into law the revised DUI bill which was approved last month at the Washington State Special Legislative Session.  Under the revised bill, repeat DUI offenders will face more strict penalties as well as more stringent conditions on their release following a DUI arrest.

If you have been following this DUI bill from the beginning you will see it is just a shell of what it could have been.  Earlier this year amid two horrific tragedies in King County involving repeat DUI offenders.  Governor Inslee and several others sought to ride the public outcry and completely overhaul DUI legislation.  The Governor was on record saying the original proposals would make Washington State the Toughest in the Nation when it came to DUI Laws. 

Well unfortunately what the Governor was proposing was simply impossible to do.  When the budget in Washington State is already operating in the red.  There is no way millions of dollars can just magically appear in the budget.  In fact what was originally being proposed would have cost the State $300 million dollars.  Compared to the $2 million these changes will now cost the State.

As a Seattle DUI Attorney clearly I did not agree with what was originally proposed.  Booking people in jail for first offenses, requiring an ignition interlock for everyone within a few days after the arrest, and increasing the jail time for a first time offender by 10 days was a wee bit much in my opinion.  The current law that will be signed will be more strict for repeat offenders and keep the current penalties the same for first time offenders.

About the author: Matthew Leyba has been a practicing Seattle DUI Attorney since 2006.  He is a current Rising Star in DUI Defense by Super Lawyers Magazine, and a Top Rated Attorney by Avvo.   

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