For more information contact: House GOP Communications 651-296-5522
ST. PAUL – On Friday, the Minnesota House passed Senate File 2578, a bill chief authored in the House by Reps. Anna Wills, R- Rosemount, and Keith Franke, R-St. Paul Park, on an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 116-5. The bill criminalizes driving while under the influence of an “intoxicating substance" and closes a loophole in DWI law that came to light following a Minnesota Supreme Court case ruling in October of last year that a driver who drove after "huffing" over-the-counter aerosol spray products containing difluoroethane, or DFE, could not be charged under Minnesota's DWI laws - even though "huffing" these products leads to driver impairment.
"I am glad we were able to come together in the legislature in a bipartisan fashion and get this important update to Minnesota's DWI laws sent to the governor's desk," said Rep. Wills. "It's tragic that it took one of my own constituents losing his life before we became fully aware of this loophole in our laws. My thoughts and prayers remain with his family and loved ones. I look forward to Governor Dayton signing this bill into law."
Rep. Wills engaged stakeholders and garnered support from a wide range of interest groups looking to improve the safety of Minnesota's roads. The Minnesota DWI Task Force, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Minnesotans for Safe Driving, and several law enforcement organizations from across the state were among those to lend their support.
Senator Greg Clausen, DFL - Apple Valley, was the chief author in the Senate, which passed the bill earlier in the week.
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