New Hampshire, Connecticut amend license renewal rules

| 7/13/2011

New laws in two New England states cover rules on driver’s license renewals.

Starting Friday, July 15, New Hampshire will no longer be on a short list of states to require both a road test and a vision test before license renewals for drivers age 75 or older. Illinois is the other state.

Existing New Hampshire law requires affected drivers to prove his or her “physical and mental qualification to hold a license.”

Previously HB549, the new law drops the requirement that drivers 75 or older be required to take driving tests to renew their licenses. However, the Division of Motor Vehicles does retain the right to require tests of affected drivers whenever circumstances warrant a more thorough review.

Rep. Robert Williams, D-Concord, said the change was necessary because age discrimination in any form should not be tolerated.

In nearby Connecticut, lawmakers did away with a never-funded law that required periodic vision screening for all driver’s license renewals.

Since 1990, state law has required vision screening for all drivers every 12 years. The intent was to help identify and evaluate signs a person’s driving may be impaired.

Citing a lack of funds to implement the screening requirement, lawmakers this year opted to do away with the requirement. As a result, it is estimated to save the state $2 million during the next two years.

Advocates of doing away with the vision screening say there is no evidence that a lack of testing results in more wrecks.

To view other legislative activities of interest for New Hampshire, click here. To view other legislative activities of interest for Connecticut, click here.

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