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Government and Politics

Akron council is considering two texting bans -- tough and tougher
Both would go further than state law

Akron City Council President Garry Moneypenny
Courtesy of Akron City Council
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Akron City Council is weighing two texting while driving bans that are both stricter than the new state law, which will be enforced starting next month.

One measure of the city law would make texting while driving a primary offense for all ages, which means you can be pulled over if caught texting. The state law makes texting while driving a primary offense for teens, but secondary offense for adults -- meaning you have to be pulled over for something else. 

The second proposal makes exceptions for drivers who use hands-free devices and allots 20 percent of the fine toward education.

Akron City Council President Garry Moneypenny isn't taking sides. He says both ordinances are meant to benefit the public.

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“I think everybody’s intentions are just to make the streets of Akron safer. ... When you put a more severe penalty on something, people do tend to maybe adhere and pay a little more attention to the law when they know they can get in trouble,” Moneypenny says. “I don’t think it’s a bad thing if people say, ‘We’re in Akron, better not text; we could get a ticket here.’”

Moneypenny says the proposals will be discussed at tonight’s council meeting. He says he’s not sure what the decision will be, but it will be voted on within the next couple weeks. 

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