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.
- Gang member shot, killed after lunging at...
- Vegas’ water drying up
- Utah among states with greatest urban sprawl
- 'Modern Family' dad opens beer restaurant in...
- Salt Lake Comic Con FanX draws 100,000 attendees
- Doug Robinson: Horrific crimes show the thin...
- Man killed in court had tried to prevent...
- Fundraiser established for 2-year-old who was...
- Utah's new adaptive testing system... 58
- Utah among states with greatest urban... 44
- U. student government passes resolution... 31
- Gang member shot, killed after lunging... 26
- 2-year-old boy dies from accidental... 25
- Doug Robinson: Horrific crimes show the... 23
- GOP resolution calls for partisan... 19
- Salt Lake City's inversion problem... 17