Flathead Lawmakers Support Public Safety

Several Flathead-area legislators sponsored important public-safety measures

By Tim Fox

During this past session, several Flathead-area legislators sponsored important public-safety measures brought forward by my office.

Rep. Keith Regier sponsored House Bill 488, which helped us close loopholes that have developed in the DUI code over the past few decades. The bill also updated the fines and created an administrative fee for those who refuse to provide a breath sample. This new law will help us deal with DUI offenders more consistently and effectively.

House Bill 491, sponsored by Rep. Steve Lavin, made important updates to our 24/7 Sobriety Program. This successful program helps us treat repeat DUI offenders, keeps them from reoffending, and saves taxpayers money by reducing jail costs. We continue to add counties to this program, which gives prosecutors and judges a vital tool to deal with offenders who repeatedly put citizens in danger by driving while intoxicated.

Rep. Frank Garner carried House Resolution 7. This measure mandates a study of our law enforcement academy to ensure the facility is funded adequately, curriculum is up-to-date, and that officers have the training necessary to deal with intense, dangerous situations. This study will help lawmakers develop important recommendations for the 2017 Session.

Reps. Regier, Lavin, and Garner moved these bills through the legislative process and helped build strong bipartisan support for them. They worked hard on behalf of their constituents and all Montanans, and I am thankful for their dedication and service.

Tim Fox
Attorney General of Montana