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Senate passes bill to increase seat belt fines

April 6, 2004
By: Monica Walter
State Capital Bureau
Links: SCS SB 710

A bill modifying regulations on child safety seats in cars would also allow police to pull you over just for not wearing a seatbelt. Monica Walter reports from the state Capitol.

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The Missouri Senate has sent a bill to the House allowing officers to pull a driver over simply for not wearing a seatbelt.

Right now, an officer can only add a seat belt violation to other traffic violations.

Boone County Senator Ken Jacob voted against the bill.

He says the bill infringes on citizen's rights.

Actuality: JACOB.WAV
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Contents: "This is a free society for us to come and go as we please... and now the government can pull us over because we are choosing not to protect ourselves.

Currently not wearing a seat belt can result in a ten dollar fine.

The bill increases the fine to fifteen dollars.

From the state Capitol, I'm Monica Walter.

mrw

A bill passed in the Missouri Senate increases the fine for not wearing your seatbelt. Monica Walter reports from the state Capitol.

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Not wearing a seatbelt has always been against the law, but currently police need to pull you over for another reason.

The bill allows police to pull drivers over simply for not wearing a seatbelt.

Senator Jon Dolan supports the bill and says the bill is a safety standard.

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OutCue: Sen. Jon Dolan
Contents: "You have certain headlights of a certain standard, certain tires of a certain speed rating, certain doors, airbags, windows, it's just an automobile and it's an automobile safety issue, It doesn't seem to be greater than that to me."

Opponents say the bill puts an infringement on driver's rights. From the state Capitol, I'm Monica Walter.

mrw

A bill passed in the Missouri Senate gives cops another reason to pull you over. Monica Walter reports from the state Capitol.

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Under current law, you can only be pulled over for traffic violations, then a seat belt violation can be added.

The bill changes that.

Republican Senator Jon Dolan, chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, sponsored this part of the bill.

He says even though police can pull you over for seatbelt violations now, it doesn't go on your driving record. You only get fined.

Actuality:
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OutCue: Sen. Jon Dolan
Contents: "He has to see you without your seat belt which means it has to be daylight, it's not an incident to search, he can pull you over and ticket you just for that. It would be a fifteen dollar infraction, no moving violation, no points."

The fifteen dollar fine is an increase from the current fine of ten dollars. From the state Capitol, I'm Monica Walter.