SALT LAKE CITY — Concerns about creating unnecessary legislation and the removal of educational language stalled the idling revisions bill Thursday after a 3-2 decision to move the meeting forward without a vote.
HB148's sponsor, Rep. Patrice Arent, D-Millcreek, said she plans to amend the bill and try for another hearing in the Senate Transportation, Public Utilities, Energy and Technology Committee.
Arent said education has not been enough to change idling practices, and now more Utah cities have anti-idling ordinances or are considering them.
HB148 would allow cities to create idling ordinances that would be more enforceable and effective by removing the requirement for three warnings before a ticket. The bill originally took out the need for warnings but it was modified in the House to require one warning before passing that body last week.
"It’s really difficult to try to get our officers to engage with three warnings. I don’t disagree that one warning is appropriate," Millcreek Mayor Jeff Silvestrini said.
Bryce Bird, director of the Utah Division of Air Quality, mentioned idling a car gets zero miles per gallon.Comment on this story
"It is very clear that it is better for your car to turn it off, it’s better for the air quality to turn it off, it's better for your pocketbook to turn it off," Bird said.
Sen. Kathleen Riebe, D-Cottonwood Heights, said a study showed air quality in classrooms near the drop-off zones at schools was worse than in other classrooms.
"We need to start taking this seriously. This is not just for driving your car but it’s for the safety of our children, and I think its important," Riebe said.