Drink-driving bill tops Dail priorities
THE Government's legislation to lower the drink-driving limit even further will be one of the first items dealt with in the new Dail term.
The Road Traffic (No 2) Bill is one of 30 priority bills in the Fine Gael-Labour coalition's legislative programme for the autumn session.
It will bring in a new breath-test limit of 50mg of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, down from 80mg, which is the equivalent of drinking less than one pint of beer.
Motorists caught just over the new drink-driving limit will be hit with penalty points and a €220 on-the-spot fine instead of losing their licence.
A government spokesman last night said the drink-driving limit changes would be brought in in time for the October bank holiday weekend.
Among the other priority bills due to be published between now and Christmas is one dealing with the Government's €100 household charge, as well as Justice Minister Alan Shatter's bill to make it a criminal offence to withhold information on child abuse. Another bill is due to bring down costs in the legal profession.
The programme also has a further 100 non-priority bills, which will be published sometime next year.
These include a bill to create Solas, the training-agency replacement for FAS; a climate-change bill; and legislation to allow cans and bottles of alcohol to carry health warnings.