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Major Ohio DUI Reform Coming Soon

UPDATE: Gov. John Kasich signed Annie’s Law Bill Wednesday. The law will take effect April 4th and will reduce first time offenders sentences by half in they choose to participate.

UPDATE: Annie’s Law has now passed the Ohio Senate. The bill now awaits Gov. Kasich’s signature to become law. Ohio would then be one of 20 states plus Washington D.C. to require ignition locks for convicted DUI drivers.

Original article written Nov. 16, 2016: 

A law preventing convicted DUI drivers from committing additional offenses is close to its passing deadline, according to NBC4i.

A few years ago, Annie Rooney was the victim of a head-on car crash by a drunk driver who was convicted of drunk driving three times prior.

Since then, her family has worked tirelessly to pass Annie’s Law, a DUI law that requires first-time offenders have ignition interlock devices installed in their cars, with incentives to suspend jail time and reduce license suspension by half.

The ignition interlock devices is essentially a breathalyzer, if you breathe in and you’re over the limit, the car won’t start.

According to NBC4i, the law was passed by the Ohio House, but it needs to pass in the Senate as well to survive — and there are only five committee hearings left with only a few more Senate sessions, meaning the law could fail before a vote is even cast. 

So far in 2016, there have been 22,000 OVI arrested offenders, and Franklin County alone amounted for 1,419 total alcohol-related crashes just last year, according to an Ohio Public Safety report.

The Rooney family is pressing on with their efforts to appeal to committee members.

You can read more about this story on NBC4i. 

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