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Tougher penalties for DWI advance

SANTA FE, N.M. — A proposal to increase penalties for repeat DWI offenders was revived Tuesday with a unanimous vote from a House committee that voted last week to put the proposal on ice.

House Bill 10 would specify that prior felony DWI convictions count toward the state’s mandatory sentencing increases for repeat offenders. The bill also would make it more difficult for DWI offenders using an interlock device in their vehicle to have it removed and require offenders sentenced to house arrest to routinely use a Breathalyzer.

The House Transportation and Public Works Committee on Tuesday voted 6-0 to advance the proposal. Last week the committee tabled the bill saying there were too many unanswered questions about the legislation.

“On a 6-0 vote we revived this bill. I am exhilarated,” said Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard, D-White Rock, a co-sponsor of the bill.