Motor carrier updates, ignition interlock changes advance

Senators advanced a bill from general file Feb. 29 that would bring state motor carrier statutes up-to-date and change ignition interlock provisions.

LB751, introduced by Valentine Sen. Deb Fischer, would adopt:
• handicapped parking permit physical standards;
• the International Registration Plan for apportioned vehicles in interstate commerce;
• federal rules and regulations pertaining to commercial motor vehicles and commercial driver licenses;
• federal rules and regulations pertaining to hazardous materials, agricultural operations and exceptions for nonspecification packagings used in intrastate transportation; and
• more specific language on what federal provisions the State Patrol is authorized to enforce.

The bill also would allow a repeat drunken driving offender using an ignition interlock permit to drive to an ignition interlock service facility.

Fischer said the updates keep Nebraska motor carrier law current with federal law. If the state is not in compliance with federal regulations, she said, it could lose $6.7 million of federal highway funding in the future.

The Transportation and Telecommunications Committee introduced an amendment, adopted 32-0, that would include provisions of five other bills also introduced by Fischer.

LB718 would authorize the handling of certificates of title in any county or the state Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and would change the distribution of title fees.

LB724 would make corrections to the medical certification program for commercial motor vehicle drivers and prohibit texting while driving a commercial motor vehicle.

LB726 would eliminate the requirement that the DMV send out certain notices by certified or registered mail.

LB748 would repeal two sections of statute requiring the courts to remit a list of outstanding arrest warrants to the department each month.

LB769 would remove county treasurers’ authority to issue duplicate or replacement driver licenses.

Fischer introduced another amendment, adopted 32-0, that would require department employees who verify or produce operator’s licenses or state identification cards to submit their fingerprints to the FBI for a criminal history background check.

Norfolk Sen. Mike Flood also introduced an amendment, adopted 32-0, that would prohibit juveniles who violate the Motor Vehicle Operator’s License Act from being eligible for an ignition interlock permit.

Senators adopted two additional technical amendments and LB751 advanced from general file on a 30-1 vote.

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