TRENTON, NJ — Looking to evaluate how New Jersey can bolster policies to reduce drunken and impaired driving following a 27-percent increase in fatalities since 2015, a measure to establish a 19-member Commission on Drunk and Impaired Driving was advanced by the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee on Dec. 5.
Under joint resolution AJR-64, the commission would be tasked to examine the efficacy of existing penalties and policies along with evidence-based best practices, reporting its findings and making recommendations to the governor and Legislature within a year.
Sponsors of the resolution, Assembly Democrats John McKeon, who represents parts of Essex and Morris counties, and Joe Danielsen, who represents parts of Middlesex and Somerset counties, released the following joint statement: “The Legislature has successfully revised penalties for drunk driving and expanded the use of ignition interlock devices under a law that went into effect on Dec. 1, but there is still more work to be done.
“Getting behind the wheel drunk and driving impaired are actions that warrant significant consequences. It is a public health issue that puts everyone’s life and safety at risk on the road, not just the person who is driving under the influence. Assessing how to strengthen current deterrence practices and reduce repeat offending is vital to decreasing the prevalence of traffic accidents and car-related fatalities.”
The measure now heads to the Assembly speaker for further review.