Press Release - 09-06-2023
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 6, 2023
NYS DMV PROPOSES STRENGTHENING STATE REGULATIONS TO GET DANGEROUS DRIVERS OFF THE ROAD
Proposed Amendments Will Bolster Ability to Remove Drivers Who Engage in Risky Behavior and Make It More Difficult for Persistent Violators to Restore Driving Privileges
Proposed Regulatory Amendments Open for Public Comment Through November 6, 2023
In response to Governor Kathy Hochul’s 2023 State of the State proposal to take high-risk drivers off the road, the Department of Motor Vehicles proposed changes to DMV regulations to bolster the ability to remove drivers who engage in risky behavior from New York roadways and make it more difficult for persistent violators to get back their driving privilege.
These regulatory amendments represent a multi-pronged approach to address dangerous driving behavior that puts everyone at risk.
Mark J.F. Schroeder, Commissioner of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles and Chair of the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee, said, “The message is simple: If your actions behind the wheel put others in danger, you don’t belong in the driver’s seat. That’s why we are proposing significant and aggressive actions to protect other drivers, motorcyclists, bicyclists, pedestrians and children. Everyone deserves to feel safe regardless of how they choose to commute or enjoy our roads.”
The proposed changes will:
1. Increase the number of points associated with dangerous driving.
The long-established Driver Violation Point System gives the New York State DMV a way to identify and take action against high-risk drivers. The DMV assigns points for certain traffic violations.
DMV is proposing to add point values to violations that currently have none. Violations include alcohol- or drug-related convictions, driving without a license, and any violation involving speeding in a work zone, leaving the scene of a personal injury crash, or striking a bridge. DMV has also proposed to increase the point value for certain violations such as passing a stopped school bus.
2. Decrease the threshold at which dangerous drivers are disqualified from holding a license.
Currently, if a licensed driver accumulates 11 points in an 18-month period, their driver license may be suspended. The DMV is proposing to amend that regulation to keep more habitual offenders from driving.
The proposed amendment will increase the time frame that administrative action can be taken against a persistent violator from 18 months to 24 months.
DMV is also proposing changes to the point system used to evaluate requests for re-licensure after drivers have been convicted of multiple reckless driving and similar violations. These changes will make it more difficult for drivers with many convictions to regain their driving privileges.
During that evaluation process, DMV is also proposing a change that will allow the agency to consider an applicant’s driving history going back four years from the date they applied for re-licensure. DMV previously looked at a driver’s record going back three years.
Read more about the New York State Driver Point System.
3. Lower the bar for permanent license forfeiture for reckless drivers who continue to drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
DMV is proposing to reduce the number of alcohol- or drug-related driving convictions or incidents that would result in a permanent denial of a driver license application.
Currently, where regulations stipulate that an application for re-licensure be denied if a driver has five or more alcohol or drug-related driving convictions, the DMV is proposing to lower that number to four or more alcohol or drug-related convictions.
The DMV is also proposing to change regulations to allow for permanent license revocation after three alcohol- or drug-related driving convictions plus one or more other serious driving offenses.
Other proposed changes will empower the DMV to deny an application for re-licensure for two years if the applicant has three alcohol- or drug-related driving convictions and no serious driving offense. Other applicants who meet the same criteria but have a current license revocation for an alcohol- or drug-related conviction will face a five-year revocation.
All proposed changes can be reviewed in the New York State Register and will be open for comment for 60 days.