The Rhode Island
Senate approved legislation May 28 that would permit police to pull
over drivers simply for not buckling up.
law, police can issue seat-belt citations only if they stop drivers
for another traffic violation.
With new authority,
police can pull over drivers if they are not wearing a seat belt.
passed the Senate 29-7, would provide for a warning-only period
from July 1 through the end of the year. Afterwards, violators would
be fined $30, down from the current $75.
sponsor, Sen. Daniel DaPonte, D-East Providence, told The Providence
Journal that Rhode Island could be in line for additional federal
money if the measure is passed.
The Bush administration
recently proposed an incentive program to encourage states to increase
seat-belt enforcement. Rhode Island could get $4 million annually
over the next six years if Congress agrees to retain the proposal
in the transportation funding reauthorization bill.
is headed to the House for consideration.