The Senate State Affairs Committee has introduced two new bills modifying the 1989 law restricting 14-year-old driving privileges.
The bills introduced by the committee on Friday will be forwarded to the Transportation Committee, which rejected a proposal to modify the law earlier this week.The current law sets 16 as the minimum driving age. But it allows special permits to be issued to 14- and 15-year-olds to drive to work or school when no bus transportation is available if they have completed driver's training.
The decision on issuing a permit is up to the local sheriff, and officials throughout the state claim there has been confusion and administrative problems ever since the law went into effect.
One proposal introduced on Friday would allow 14-year-olds to take driver's education classes, but they could not get a license until 15, and it would be restricted to daylight driving only.
An unrestricted license would be issued at 16.
"We really need to have a black and white statute," Blackfoot Republican Jerry Twiggs, the bill's sponsor, said.
The other, proposed by Transportation Chairman Dennis Hansen, R-Soda Springs, authorizes daylight-only permits for 14-year-olds if they have completed driver's education. They would only be able to drive to work, on errands for their parents and to school or school activities or if a parent is with them.
The bill also prohibits anyone other than a family member from riding with the 14-year-old driver in what Hansen said would effectively eliminate any opportunity for pleasure-driving or joyriding with friends.