Because one drunken driving offense is too many, an Assembly panel approved bipartisan legislation today that is sponsored by Assembly Republicans John Amodeo and Caroline Casagrande to increase penalties against drivers who repeatedly drive under the influence. “One drunken driving offense is too many,” Amodeo, R-Atlantic, said. “We need stronger penalties against those who repeatedly put other people’s lives in danger to stop them before another tragedy occurs.” The legislation was introduced last summer in the midst of a Vineland man getting charged with driving under the influence six times in three months. “That is simply outrageous,” Casagrande said. “Driving drunk six times is no accident and we need to make it harder for serial drunk drivers to get back on the road and put our families at risk.” The bill, A-3057: • Imposes additional penalties for multiple drunken driving offenses within 60 days: a maximum $10,000 fine and/or 18 months in prison. • Requires courts to immediately suspend the driver’s license on a second offense. • Sends subsequent offenses to Superior Court instead of municipal courts. • Allows courts to impose bails of up to $10,000 for repeat offenses. “We need to take keys from people who can’t learn their lesson after a first offense,” Amodeo said. “This law would make our roads safer from menaces who have no respect for themselves or human life,” Casagrande added. The measure has bipartisan support from 29 members of the Assembly. ####