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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen (R)

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Legislative Update from Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Dear Neighbors,

On August 1st, a new law passed this year will go into effect that places new prohibitions on cellphone use while operating a vehicle.

For many, this new law will have a big impact on the way they use their cellphone while driving. Given this, I strongly encourage folks to take the time to become familiar with the new law as we work to make our roads safer.

The new law allows a driver to use their cell phone to make calls, text, listen to music or podcasts and get directions, but only by voice commands or single-touch activation without holding the phone.

Individuals will no longer be able to physically hold a cellphone while operating a vehicle. Also, a driver may not use their phone at any time for video calling, video live-streaming, Snapchat, gaming, looking at video or photos stored on the phone, using non-navigation apps, reading texts and scrolling or typing on the phone.

Exceptions are allowed for individuals to obtain emergency assistance if there is an immediate threat to life and safety, or when in an authorized emergency vehicle while performing official duties.

GPS and other systems that can only be used for navigation are exempt from the Hands-Free law as well as in-car screens.

The first ticket is $50 plus court fees and the second and later tickets are $275 plus court fees.

Please reach out to my office if you have any questions or concerns regarding the new law or visit the Minnesota Department of Public Safety’s website:

A full list of laws going into effect is available here.

Staying in Touch

That’s all for this week’s update. I urge you to contact me if you have any legislative questions, concerns, or ideas. I can be reached by phone at 651-296-4229 or via email at 

Thanks and have a good weekend,


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