SACRAMENTO (AP) — The California state Senate has approved a bill that would increase fines for texting or using a handheld cell phone while driving.

The base fine would increase from $20 to $50 per violation. With various fees, a first offense would cost $328, up from the current $208. A repeat offender could be fined $100, or $528 with fees.

A subsequent violation would add one point to the motorist’s driving record.

SB28 by Democratic Sen. Joe Simitian of Palo Alto also would make it illegal to talk on a handheld cell phone while riding a bicycle. It passed Monday on a 24-12 vote and heads to the Assembly.

Republicans objected, saying the bill goes too far and is disliked by drivers. A similar measure died last year in an
Assembly committee.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (31)
  1. Horseman says:

    Fascists! If the CA legislature is so worried about distracted drivers they should ban having chidren in the car as well, remove all radios and other entertainment devices, etc,. This is just a way for CA to make more money.

    1. Big brother says:

      I am glad to see there is other people out there that see through they’re deceit and lies. These fascist pigs are simply trying to empty the pockets of an already broke public. They need to start going after all the money that the Wall street bankers stole!!

  2. Rosie says:

    what happens when you see a cop talking on his cell phone? how does that work?

    1. lou says:

      cops have qualified immunity, ex. drunkcops are escorted home bybrotherly love cops. yesterday in victorville a san bernardino deputy arrested for sex with a minor, hardly anything said about. medai protects cops.

  3. Steve says:

    Just buy a damn bluetooth headset and problem solved. Will they actually enforce this most of the time anyway? Probably not. I’m totally ok with this because I always use my bluetooth headset. I wish they would start pulling over all the idiots with their phone glued to the side of their head though.

    1. Big brother says:

      Even with your stupid blue tooth you are still distracted!! Don’t be naive.

    2. hans says:

      how aout confiscating or impouning cell phones for violators?

  4. Randy says:

    Its amazing what you can do while driving with a smart phone..

  5. Ray says:

    These Democrats are always looking for ways to PAY OFF THE UNIONS

  6. Pooky says:

    Sick and tired of seeing people using the phone – not only to talk, but to text. Make it $1,000!

  7. Mike says:

    Hay Horseman,
    Of course its a way to make money.. It’s a law, so if you don’t want to pay, don’t be one of the “important people” always on your phone…

    1. Just tired says:

      Hey Mike, Why does the government get to pick and choose what laws to enforce. If they are going to enforce any laws They should enforce illegal immigration, which they don’t. Which is taxing the State of California 100’s of millions of dollars from health care, to housing. I am sick and tired of this State.Choosing to go after someone talking on phone for a few hundred dollars where they could go after the 100’s of millions it pays to have illegal’s living off the rest of us.

  8. Dottie says:

    Of course it’s going to be disliked by drivers. That’s the point, isn’t it? I see too many people who seem to think the fine isn’t meant for them or they are just dumb. A $20.00 first ticket ends up about $136.00 or more, but all they hear is $20.00. Now it will be twice as much.

  9. dollarbillistoiletpaper says:

    bump up the fees to 2500. Drunk driving first offense to 50,000. castrate all sex offender once and for all. ship all prisoners to a deserted island . govt ment worker shall only receive 50,000 a year. bank/corp owners shall no longer run this society. have a nice day

  10. alexfv says:

    its true alot of accidents and lousy driving like going slow weaving into lanes ect. why not a blue tooth everybody states bad about it till there hit or hit someone or just a simple run a red light situation than relize wow im on the phone

  11. Secret Math Leads to Deficit says:

    I don’t understand how the $30 increase in fine leads to $120 increase in fees. Isn’t the paperwork the same?

  12. Kaolin says:

    What’s sad is that there are bigger problems on the road than the cell phone use. There are people that are completely oblivous to everyone around them.

    I’ve been runoff the road by someone that was neither on the phone nor drunk. For that matter, they never even responded to the horn. Nope just too busy chatting with the other one in the car. Should we have a fine for having a second person in the car…it is distracted driving.

    There is a lot more law enforcement on the road these days and they are setting up traps to generate revenue. I used to see one highway patrolman a week on the road home. Now it is at least one each trip. I found one parked on the inside shoulder with the “gun” and 4 of his buddies down the road issuing citations. Don’t fool yourself, it is about the revenue and not about safety.

    1. Thenogrey says:

      it’s not a revenue generator if people follow the law and do the speed limit!

  13. j says:

    I like how I can eat fast food, use my gps and have my dog in my lap, but me on the cell phone is too dangerous….idiotic reasoning

    1. hans says:

      u can actually get a ticket fo r anything that distracts your driving @ the officers discretion

  14. Pedro Cruz says:

    you can come too this busy street and will see every day the same people speeding, texting , anwering the phone, driving without caring about pedestrians the street Verdugo rd. between Colorado blvd. and Eagle Rock blvd. at Los Angeles Ca. 90065

  15. Gary M says:

    We need a crack down on tinted windows. People drive with cell phones, drinking beer, and not wearing the seatbelt and have no fear of a citation because the police cannot see inside the car. Also, solo in the carpool lanes. How many people are really in the car. When a car is about to pull in front of you, how can you tell if the driver is looking at you? After dark, they do not see most of the surroundings when they drive. And a real novel idea would be for the police to take their tint off. They are not exempt. Why should they write you a citation and then get in their own tinted car and drive home?? When you get a ticket, ask them why is it ok for them, but not for you!!!!!

  16. ILLEGALS says:

    CA making big $$$ out of this whole BS, but it does get annoying seeing drivers talk on the Cell while driving.

    Not a big deal if drivers have Speaker phone, blue tooth, or wire headsets.

  17. Marco says:

    Can we include pets in the drivers lap while driving.
    People at the gym sitting on exercise equipment texting.
    People who wait to the last possible inch to merge.
    People who won’t slow down, or speed up when you are trying to get over.
    And Politicians who cuts jail time for people who have pled guilty to manslaughter.

  18. ILLEGALS says:

    Why don’t they pass laws for people putting make-ups on while driving?

    1. Thenogrey says:

      They did, it’s covered under vehicle code 22350.

  19. Stupid Wetto says:

    I wonder if they’ll force people to attend Cell Phone Violator’s Class/Program much like DUI, SEX Education for people busted soliciting Prostitutes, Anger Management, etc..

  20. gwen says:

    many of these laws are not made to protect the people hence the amount. really..300 hundred bucks will deter me from not using my phone?? Get a clue sacramento…we’re not falling for it…if you even care about saving lives…increase amounts of

  21. Gwen says:

    it to thousands of dollars. human lives are more important pocketing 300 bucks…we all know the people working for the state is a bunch of low lifes. get off ur high horse and make things happen g

  22. Thenogrey says:

    Know your facts before commenting. multiply sources of research have PROVEN that among all types of multi-tasking, cell phone use while driving remains the greatest danger among them all. Those are FACTS!

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