JUNEAU -- The Alaska House has passed an explicit ban on texting while driving.
Lawmakers in 2008 passed legislation that was intended to ban texting while driving even though it didn't say texting anywhere in the law. The measure is being challenged in court, with a magistrate in Kenai having determined the Legislature should have been explicit if it truly meant to prohibit the activity.
Rep. Bill Thomas said HB255 is a good bill and simply reaffirms the action taken by the Legislature in 2008.
Bill language states that texting while driving has been illegal since the law was passed and that the magistrate's decision is "legally incorrect."
The 34-5 vote followed concerns with criminalizing the activity and legislative challenges in keeping up with ever-changing technology.
The bill moves to the Senate.