Bills Easing Driver's License Suspensions Pass

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginians may be less likely to lose their driver’s licenses for unpaid fines and minor drug offences.

The General Assembly passed legislation Friday that would allow those convicted of a first-time marijuana offense to avoid an automatic driver’s license suspension of six months.

The legislature also passed a bill that would make it easier for people with unpaid court debts to enter into a deferred or installment payment plan to avoid having their licenses suspended. The bill sets a down payment limit at $100. The bills now head to the governor.

Advocates have long pushed for reforms on driver’s license suspensions, saying Virginia’s current rules disproportionately hurt the poor.

Friday was the second-to-last day of the 2017 legislative session, as lawmakers are expected to adjourn on Saturday.

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