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Driving while young becoming easier in Illinois

Young motorists said two state laws Governor Pat Quinn recently signed now makes it easier for them to drive without fear of being stopped so often.

In July, Quinn signed Senate Bill 3411, which now prohibits a county or municipality law enforcement officials from comparing the number of citations issued by the law enforcement officer to the number of citations issued by any other law enforcement officer for purposes of job performance evaluation.

And last week the governor signed Senate Bill 2583, which eliminates the requirement that a valid driver’s license must be posted as bail for certain traffic offenses. The new law allows a motorist’s signature on the citation to be their guarantee that they will comply with the terms of the citation and either appears in court or pay the required fine.

Motorists said they are thrilled about the new laws.

“I can’t tell you how many times I have had to give up my driver’s license while driving on the highway through a small town,” said Andre Morrison, 49. “Like most people I go ahead and plead guilty so I can hurry up and get my license back. Now there’s no rush.”

Dennis Ellison, 33, said police officers (especially in Chicago) often stop young drivers hoping to find a gun, drugs or a warrant issued against them.

“At least now [these laws make] it is harder for them to stop us for no apparent reason,” Ellison said.