The current focus is a measure in the House which aims to place additional restrictions on residents who are both convicted and accused of impaired driving. House Bill 1276 is being discussed by state representatives, and its
- Banning marijuana within reach of a driver under an extension of the state's open container laws
- Increasing the use of round-the-clock electronic monitoring devices for DUI defendants (not convicted offenders)
- Inclusion of a notification on the driving records and drivers' licenses of repeat DUI defendants (again, not convicted repeat offenders) which would immediately indicate to police whether a person is required to drive a vehicle on which an ignition interlock device is installed
Another provision may actually reduce the hassle for accused DUI suspects. In lieu of installing an ignition interlock device on their vehicle, a defendant could simply sign a sworn affidavit that he or she will not drive any motor vehicle (and would go to jail if they violated the agreement). The city of Seattle already provides this option, given that ignition interlock devices cost hundreds of dollars to obtain and install - and the fact that Seattle is walkable and offers multiple transit options.
HB 1276 has been bouncing between the House and Senate in Olympia and is currently slated for another reading in the House. Given that the Assembly is in a special session that's primarily focused on getting a state budget passed, it's quite possible that the bill might not be approved in its current form (or at all).