Sunday, October 11, 2009

Sharon Montgomery reports: Hang Up On Texting While Driving.

Sharon Montgomery provides the following updated information on Ohio ordinances and laws prohibiting text messaging while driving.

Sharon Montgomery is a citizen-advocate who is working with state and local government to increase traffic safety by banning distracted driving.

Among many venues, she has made her case for safer driving conditions on Bexley Public Radio and the station’s blog at

Toledo city council has a draft Driving While Texting (“DWT”) ordinance. Montgomery made her presentation to the committee last Monday. The committee is revising the proposal and will provide Montgomery the revised text for comment.

Montgomery also reports that the Summit County Commissioners are also considering enacting a DWT regulation this month.

Gahanna city council will have its first discussion of a DWT prohibition at committee of the whole meeting this Tuesday night. Montgomery plans to attend the committee meeting. Mayor Becky Stinchcomb was featured in a story on the front page of Gahanna News encouraging citizens to take a week and pay attention to driving safety.

Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (“MORPC”) is holding off on a resolution of support for a state law DWT ban until they know what form that proposed law will take. In addition MORPC is considering support for an internal policy that limits use of communication devices while driving.

The AAA safety week program this year was called “Heads Up Driving Week” and ran from October 5 to11.

One of Ohio’s proposed ban on DWT is Senate Bill 164. Sponsor testimony in support of this bill is scheduled for 10:15 a.m. on Wednesday October 14 in the south hearing room at the Statehouse in downtown Columbus. Montgomery said that she will attend that hearing.

Action on a DWT ban in the Ohio House of Representative public safety committee has been stalled because there was no committee chairman. There are five different proposals for a ban in the House. Representative Linda Bolon is the new chair and plans to hold weekly hearings beginning October 22 until the committee’s backlog is reviewed. Thereafter, the committee will meet every other week.

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