Land O’Lakes, FL– In a phone interview exclusively with News Talk Florida State Representative Ardian Zika (R-37) announced that he has filed his first bill for the 2020 Legislative Session, HB 37, which will double the penalties for reckless driving around school buses. This legislation comes after public outcry over video showing cars passing a stopped school bus while children were getting on the bus.
“As our children begin a new school year, their safety is my number one priority,” said Representative Zika. “House Bill 37 sends a message that the Florida House takes the issue of safety at our bus stops seriously and I look forward to passing this good bill in the 2020 Session. My thanks to Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco for working on this important legislation with me.”
House Bill 37 doubles the penalty from $100 to $200 for the failure to stop at a school bus stop. It also lengthens the possible license suspension for multiple offenses from 90 days to 6 months to 180 days to 1 year. For passing a stopped school bus on the side children enter or exit, the fine doubles from $200 to $400 and the possible license suspension is raised from 180 days to 1 year to 360 days to 2 years. The fees and penalties associated with school bus safety have not been increased since 1997.
Sheriff Chris Nocco added “I thank Representative Zika for taking the lead on this important issue. This is an important issue to our children and to the parents who entrust them to us every day.”
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Committees: PreK-12 Innovation Subcommittee; Insurance & Banking Subcommittee; PreK-12 Appropriations Subcommittee; State Affairs Committee; Joint Select Committee on Collective Bargaining; Local, Federal & Veterans Affairs Subcommittee