Hearing set for Wisconsin drunken driving bills

CREATED Aug 11, 2013

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The public will get a chance to sound off this week on a new set of bills that would create tougher penalties for drunken drivers.

The Assembly Judiciary Committee has scheduled a public hearing for Thursday on the measures, which would make a first offense a misdemeanor if the driver's blood alcohol level is 0.15 percent or higher, allow authorities to seize drunken drivers' cars and require mandatory court appearances for accused drunken drivers.

The committee isn't expected to take any action but will listen to public comments on the proposals.

The bills' Republican authors, Rep. Jim Ott and Sen. Alberta Darling, also are pushing bills that would make third and fourth offenses felonies and create mandatory sentences for drunken drivers who injure or kill someone.