State legislators are expected to revive debate over sobriety checkpoints to catch drunk drivers.
There appears to be a growing bipartisan consensus at the Capitol that tougher OWI laws are needed, especially following a recent series of newspaper articles examining the impact of Wisconsin's current laws. State Representative Spencer Black (D-Madison) says those changes should included allowing police to randomly pull over drivers to see if they're drunk. Black says a message needs to be sent that driving under the influence will not be tolerated.
The Madison Democrat also expects lawmakers to consider a measure that would make first offense drunk driving a crime, rather than a civil penalty.
Officials with the state Tavern League says there's no proof those proposals would actually help lower drunk driving rates in the state. They say lawmakers should instead focus on repeat offenders and those who drive with high blood alcohol levels.