WPR News
7:57 pm
Wed March 3, 2010

Wyoming House kills seatbelt bill

Cheyenne, WY – A bill that would have increased seatbelt fines from a maximum of 25 dollars to 75 dollars has died in the Wyoming house. The bill was hailed as a way to reduce workplace fatalities that occur on Wyoming's highways. But, Jackson Representative Keith Gingery says judges in most cases would issue a fine much less than 75 dollars. He says, this would have made the increase almost meaningless. Gingery is also disappointed that the Senate killed a workplace safety bill that would have increased fines for companies deemed to have unsafe workplaces. During debate, Gingery urged the House to bring the issue back to the drawingboard: "I urge you to vote no. Because I am worried that if we vote yes, everybody will say ok, well we fixed the workplace problem, we are all done with that issue. And we need to send the message that we are not done."

Supporters of the bill pointed out that Wyoming is among the leaders in deaths attributed to people not wearing seatbelts. But, the bill is dead for this year.