Colo.: DUID bill dies for second time in one week
For the second time in under a week, the Colorado Legislature has rejected a bill introduced to create a per se standard for driving under the influence of marijuana. SB 117 — introduced during the regular session by Sen. Steve King — died after a legislative deadline tolled. Yesterday, HB 12S-1005 — introduced during the special session — was rejected by the Senate in a vote of 17–17, with one absent. Both bills would have created automatic DUIDs for individuals who test positive for five or more nanograms of THC per milliliter of blood.
Impaired driving should not to be tolerated, but this bill was not the right way to address the problem. There is plenty of reason to believe that individuals who use marijuana more frequently than others — such as medical marijuana patients — would be considered impaired under the proposed per se law when they were actually sober. Additionally, Colorado already criminalizes driving under the influence of drugs but requires prosecutors to prove impairment on a case-by-case basis based on the totality of the circumstances.
Thanks so much to all of you Coloradoans who took the time to write your elected officials about this bill. Take care, and drive safe.