HOUSE BILL 443
56th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - first session, 2023
Alan T. Martinez
RELATING TO MOTOR VEHICLES; AMENDING A SECTION OF THE MOTOR VEHICLE CODE; PROHIBITING THE ISSUANCE OF A DRIVER'S LICENSE TO A PERSON WHOSE LICENSE HAS BEEN SUSPENDED, DENIED OR REVOKED WITHIN THE THREE YEARS PRIOR TO THE APPLICATION FOR A DRIVER'S LICENSE UNLESS THE PERSON PROVIDES EVIDENCE OF PERSONAL FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY; AMENDING A SECTION OF THE MANDATORY FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY ACT; PROVIDING A DEFINITION; RECONCILING CONFLICTING AMENDMENTS TO THE SAME SECTION OF LAW BY REPEALING LAWS 2017, CHAPTER 17, SECTION 1.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. Section 66-5-5 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1978, Chapter 35, Section 227, as amended by Laws 2017, Chapter 17, Section 1 and by Laws 2017, Chapter 79, Section 1) is amended to read:
"66-5-5. PERSONS NOT TO BE LICENSED.--The division shall not issue a driver's license under the Motor Vehicle Code to any person:
A. who is under the age of eighteen years, except the division may, in its discretion, issue:
(1) an instruction permit to a person fifteen years of age or older who is enrolled in and attending or has completed a driver education course approved by the bureau that includes a DWI education and prevention component;
(2) a provisional license to a person fifteen years and six months of age or older:
(a) who has completed a driver education course approved by the bureau or offered by a public school that includes a DWI education and prevention component and has had an instruction permit for at least six months as provided in Section 66-5-8 NMSA 1978; and
(b) who has successfully completed a practice driving component;
(3) a driver's license to a person sixteen years and six months of age or older:
(a) who has had a provisional license for at least a twelve-month period immediately preceding the date of the application for the driver's license as provided in Section 66-5-9 NMSA 1978;
(b) who has complied with restrictions on that license; and
(c) who has not been adjudicated for an offense involving the use of alcohol or drugs during the twelve-month period immediately preceding the application for the driver's license and who has no pending adjudications alleging an offense involving the use of alcohol or drugs at the time of application; and
(4) to a person thirteen years of age or older who passes an examination prescribed by the division, a license restricted to the operation of a motorcycle; provided that:
(a) the motorcycle is not in excess of one hundred cubic centimeters displacement;
(b) no holder of an initial license may carry any other passenger while driving a motorcycle; and
(c) the director approves and certifies motorcycles as not in excess of one hundred cubic centimeters displacement and by rule provides for a method of identification of such motorcycles by all law enforcement officers;
B. whose license or driving privilege has been: (1) suspended or denied during the period of suspension or denial; [or to any person whose license has been]
(2) revoked, except as provided in Section 66-5-32 NMSA 1978 and the Ignition Interlock Licensing Act; or
(3) suspended, denied or revoked within three years of the application for a driver's license and who does not provide evidence of personal financial responsibility pursuant to the Mandatory Financial Responsibility Act;
C. who is an habitual user of narcotic drugs or alcohol or an habitual user of any drug to a degree that renders the person incapable of safely driving a motor vehicle;
D. who is four or more times convicted of driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or narcotic drug regardless of whether the convictions are under the laws or ordinances of this state or any municipality or county of this state or under the laws or ordinances of any other state, the District of Columbia or any governmental subdivision thereof, except as provided in the Ignition Interlock Licensing Act. Five years from the date of the fourth conviction and every five years thereafter, the person may apply to any district court of this state for restoration of the license, and the court, upon good cause being shown, may order restoration of the license applied for; provided that the person has not been subsequently convicted of driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs. Upon issuance of the order of restoration, a certified copy shall immediately be forwarded to the division, and if the person is otherwise qualified for the license applied for, the four previous convictions shall not prohibit issuance of the license;
E. who was convicted on or after June 17, 2005 of driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs pursuant to the laws or ordinances of any other state or any governmental subdivision thereof, unless the person obtains an ignition interlock license as provided in the Ignition Interlock Licensing Act for a period of one year for a first conviction; a period of two years for a second conviction; a period of three years for a third conviction; or the remainder of the offender's life for a fourth or subsequent conviction, subject to a five-year review as provided in Subsection D of this section. Upon presentation of proof satisfactory to the division, the division may credit time spent by a person operating a motor vehicle with an ignition interlock or comparable device, as a condition of the person's sentence for a conviction in another jurisdiction, against the ignition interlock time requirements imposed by this subsection. The division shall promulgate rules necessary for granting credit to persons who participate in comparable out-of-state programs following a conviction for driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs. The requirements of this subsection shall not apply to a person who:
(1) has only one conviction for driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs that did not result in great bodily harm or death, and that conviction is pursuant to the laws or ordinances of any other state or any governmental subdivision thereof and who presents proof satisfactory to the division that the person completed all conditions of the person's sentence for the conviction in the other jurisdiction, whether or not installation of an ignition interlock device was a condition of the sentence; provided, however, that at least twelve months have passed since the person's conviction; or
(2) applies for a driver's license ten years or more from the date of the person's last conviction, except for a person who is subject to lifetime driver's license revocation for a conviction in another jurisdiction pursuant to this subsection;
F. who has previously been afflicted with or who is suffering from any mental disability or disease that would render the person unable to drive a motor vehicle with safety upon the highways and who has not, at the time of application, been restored to health;
G. who is required by the Motor Vehicle Code to take an examination, unless the person has successfully passed the examination;
H. who is required under the laws of this state to deposit proof of financial responsibility and who has not deposited the proof;
I. when the director has good cause to believe that the operation of a motor vehicle on the highways by the person would be inimical to public safety or welfare; or
J. as a motorcycle driver who is less than eighteen years of age and who has not presented a certificate or other evidence of having successfully completed a motorcycle driver education program licensed or offered in conformance with rules of the bureau."
SECTION 2. Section 66-5-208 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 1978, Chapter 35, Section 282, as amended) is amended to read:
"66-5-208. EVIDENCE OF FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY--AMOUNTS AND CONDITIONS.--
A. "Evidence of financial responsibility", as used in the Mandatory Financial Responsibility Act, means [evidence of the ability to respond in damages for liability, on account of accidents occurring subsequent to the effective date of the evidence, arising out of the ownership, maintenance or use of a vehicle of a type subject to registration under the laws of New Mexico] a filing with the department of a written certificate from an insurance carrier duly authorized to do business in New Mexico certifying that a motor vehicle liability insurance policy for the benefit of a person is in effect, in the following amounts:
[A.] (1) twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000) because of bodily injury to or death of one person in any one accident;
[B.] (2) subject to this limit for one person, fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) because of bodily injury to or death of two or more persons in any one accident;
[C.] (3) ten thousand dollars ($10,000) because of injury to or destruction of property of others in any one accident; and
[D.] (4) if evidence is in the form of a surety bond or a cash deposit, the total amount shall be sixty thousand dollars ($60,000).
B. "Evidence of personal financial responsibility" means a filing with the department of a written certificate from an insurance carrier duly authorized to do business in New Mexico certifying that a liability insurance policy for the benefit of a person is in effect that provides insurance in case of a motor vehicle accident when the person drives a vehicle, regardless of the vehicle the person operates, that is sufficient to meet the financial requirements of Subsection A of this section."
SECTION 3. REPEAL.--Laws 2017, Chapter 17, Section 1 is repealed.
SECTION 4. EFFECTIVE DATE.--The effective date of the provisions of this act is July 1, 2023.
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