following compiled by Greg Smith at Norwich Bulletin
New DUI law: New legislation takes effect today that changes existing laws for drunken driving convictions. The new law allows repeat offenders to keep their licenses with use of ignition interlock devices (IID) that can detect if a driver is drunk and prevent the car from starting. The new law also allows DUI offenders to be released to home confinement for treatment, rather then serving mandatory minimum prison sentences.
No change: From now on, those arrested for DUI for the first time are able to have the charge dismissed with the successful completion of an alcohol education program. The driver’s license is suspended for 90 days.
Changes: A first DUI conviction now carries a 45-day license suspension, 48 hours in prison and a one-year IID requirement. Before today, a first conviction carried a one-year license suspension. A second conviction carries a 45-day license suspension, 120 days in prison and a three-year IID requirement. Prior law carried a three-year license suspension.A third or subsequent conviction carries a one-year prison sentence and a minimum six-year license suspension. Prior to today, the license revocation was permanent.
Advocate: Janice Heggie Margolis, executive director of the Connecticut Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, said the new law should curtail the number of people driving drunk after their license is suspended.
“It’s a matter of public safety,” Margolis said. “It’s the most effective equipment available for keeping someone from driving drunk.”
Read more: Device to help curb drunken driving