Report Title:

Motor vehicle driver licensing

Description:

Allows for reciprocity of motor vehicle driver licensing to individuals at least sixteen years of age. (HB1959 HD1)

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

1959

TWENTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2004

H.D. 1

STATE OF HAWAII

 


 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

relating to motor vehicle driver licensing.

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

SECTION 1. The legislature finds that while state law allows for an exemption to the licensing process for drivers of mopeds, motorcycles, motor scooters, and passenger cars, trucks and vans of less than a specified weight that possess licenses from other states, a driver holding a driver's license from another state that is below the age of eighteen cannot take advantage of this exemption.

In Hawaii, driver's license applicants under the age of eighteen need to have completed a driver's education course and a behind-the-wheel driver training course and possess a valid instruction permit. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Arizona and Minnesota have driver licensing statutes that allow for reciprocity irrespective of age. Almost every other state, with the exception of four, require driver education for underage drivers seeking a license. Most of these courses include a behind-the-wheel component like Hawaii's.

The legislature further finds that while the move to require driver's education and behind-the-wheel training for underage drivers is a good policy, our state statute allowing for reciprocity has retained the age qualifier for decades despite most states having driver's education requirements for underage drivers equal, similar, or superior to our own.

It is the purpose of this Act to allow reciprocity in driver's licensing for any person who is at least sixteen years of age and possesses a valid driver's license issued by any other state of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, a province of the Dominion of Canada, or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

SECTION 2. Section 286-105, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"286-105 What persons are exempt from license. The following persons are exempt from license:

(1) Any person while driving or operating a motor vehicle in the service or employ of any branch or agency of the federal government; provided that the person has received a license or permit from the branch or agency to operate and drive the motor vehicle; provided further that the branch or agency has been duly authorized by the federal government to issue the license or permit;

(2) Any person while driving or operating any road machine, farm tractor, or implement of husbandry temporarily operated or moved on a highway; provided that no person under the age of thirteen years shall be permitted to drive or operate any such road machine, farm tractor, or implement of husbandry on a highway;

(3) Any person who is at least [eighteen] sixteen years of age and who has in the person's possession a valid driver's license to drive the categories of motor vehicles listed in section 286-102(b), except section 286-102(b)(4), that is equivalent to a driver's license issued in this State but was issued to the person in another state of the United States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, United States Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, a province of the Dominion of Canada, or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands for that category of motor vehicle which the person is operating;

(4) Any person who has in the person's possession a valid commercial motor vehicle driver's license issued by any state of the United States, Mexico, or a province of the Dominion of Canada that issues licenses in accordance with the minimum federal standards for the issuance of commercial motor vehicle driver's licenses; and

(5) Any person who drives or operates state or county motor vehicles while employed by, in the service of, or volunteering for the state or county fire departments, provided that they are trained and certified to drive category (4) motor vehicles as set forth in section 286-102(b)(4) by the state or county government, as appropriate, and provided that the person maintains a category (3) license as set forth in section 286-102(b)(3)."

SECTION 3. Section 286-108, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by amending subsection (c) to read as follows:

"(c) The examiner of drivers [may] shall waive the actual demonstration of ability to operate a motor vehicle for any person who is at least [eighteen] sixteen years of age and who possesses a valid driver's license issued to the applicant in any other state of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, a province of the Dominion of Canada, or the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands for the operation of vehicles in categories 1 through 3 of section 286-102."

SECTION 4. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.