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Senate approves doubling fines for drivers traveling 21 miles per hour or more over the posted limit

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The state Senate has passed a bill that would essentially double the existing fines for drivers who are caught doing more than 21 miles per hour over the posted speed limit.

The vote was 34 to 13.

The bill’s opponents said a driver caught at that speed means 7 points on the drivers’ license – and they said that should be a good enough deterrent to slow the speeders down. But the bill’s sponsor – Sen. Dean Rummel (R-Dickinson) – told the Senate the point penalty doesn’t work.

"Drivers with suspended licenses do need to go to work, so they drive without liability insurance, and take the risks of getting caught," Rummel told the Senate. "They become an even greater danger to those of us who follow the rules."

Rummel said that's why many North Dakota drivers carry 'uninsured motorist coverage' on their car insurance policy.

"What's more effective, is to increase the fines, to a point where it hurts," Rummel said.

The bill will now go to the House.

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