Harsher penalties for Lincoln DUI offenders - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

Harsher penalties for Lincoln DUI offenders

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By: Jenn Schanz

"There are really two key elements here basically. The first one, that will extend the penalty time, the revocation period, from 12 months to 18 months and the second would also have a mandatory instillation of an interlock device and that would be paid for by the offender."

City Councilman Jon Camp says drunk driving is both a national and local issue.

And that this new ordinance might bring awareness to the often deadly problem.

"Basically encourage people to be more responsible in the way they would drink and if they are driving a motor vehicle, they'll be responsible there so that we don't endanger the lives of other citizens," he says.

Nebraska recently buckled down on second offense DUI penalties.

New state law increases license suspension from one year to 18 months and also requires a device to be installed, at the cost of the driver, that will make sure they're sober before they can drive.

They'll need to have the device for at least a year.

Now Lincoln is adopting the same changes.

"The state of Nebraska has enacted a statute in this case that would supersede a city ordinance and so really what we're doing here is bringing our ordinances in conformity with state statues," says Camp.

Monday marks the second reading of the ordinance, and the public will be invited to weigh in.

According to police, last year in Lincoln alone, there were more than 1,500 drunk driving citations, and 203 drunk driving accidents.

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