Lawmaker clarifies breathalyzer proposal in response to 'mischaracterizations'
SALT LAKE CITY — A lawmaker seeking to get breathalyzers in bars spent Friday clarifying his proposal in response to what he called "mischaracterizations" of the bill.
The bill, which has yet to be completed, would ensure privacy for patrons and not increase liability for proprietors, said House Majority Whip Greg Hughes, R-Draper.
A breathalyzer machine would help drinkers make informed decisions about driving by allowing patrons to test their blood-alcohol level for $2 at the bar, Hughes said. The proposal would not require bar patrons to use the machines.
"It's not illegal to drink in Utah. It's not illegal to drink and operate a vehicle. It is illegal to drink to the point where your blood-alcohol level is 0.08 or higher and drive," he said earlier this week.
Hughes said it would be similar to having a speedometer to help people follow the speed limit. Easy access to a breathalyzer machine would help people, especially less experienced alcohol consumers, know what it means to be impaired.
"It’s not meant to be punitive to the patron to have it there. It’s not meant to be punitive to those that would put it in their establishments," Hughes said.
Emphasizing that it's still "a work in progress," Hughes said a future bill wouldn't address mitigating circumstances or provisions for mandatory machines in cases where citations have been issued.
- Idea for Burt's Bees land to become park...
- Top 7 money-saving tips for summer travel
- South Jordan mother spends days caring for...
- Repo man charged with manslaughter in...
- Report: Tourism spending in Utah grew to...
- Herbert appoints new 3rd District Court judge
- Polygamous food stamp fraud trial pushed back...
- Bomb threats called in to 2 Utah schools
- Are Utahns tiring of Mitt Romney... 105
- Utah and 10 states sue Obama... 40
- Teacher on leave after telling students... 33
- Hatch steadfast in holding up Supreme... 17
- Skateboarder dies after being shot in... 10
- Utah lawsuit challenges porn filter fees 9
- Salt Lake's next skyscraper? Proposed... 9
- IRS scam goes far beyond a phone call... 8