Wisconsin Governor signs measure increasing penalties for drunken drivers

MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin (AP) — People convicted of driving drunk will pay higher fines for repeat offenses and underage drinkers could lose their driver’ s licenses under legislation the governor signed into law today.

Under the measure Gov. Tommy Thompson signed, repeat drunken drivers in Wisconsin will see their fines rise with their blood alcohol levels beginning with their third offense.

” The people of Wisconsin are coming together to make it clear that drunken driving won’ t be tolerated, particularly by repeat offenders, ” Thompson said.

Beginning with their third offense, drunken drivers face doubled fines if their blood alcohol level was between .17 and .199 percent; tripled fines if their blood alcohol level fell between .2 and 249 percent; and quadrupled fines for .25 percent or higher.

A blood alcohol level of .10 percent is considered evidence of intoxication in Wisconsin.

The measure also requires the suspension of an underage drinker’ s driver’ s license if the youth violates alcohol laws and the violation includes a motor vehicle.