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HOUSE AMENDED
A03812
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
37
Session of
2023
INTRODUCED BY BROWN, LANGERHOLC, FLYNN, STEFANO, SCHWANK,
SANTARSIERO AND CULVER, APRIL 10, 2023
AS REPORTED FROM COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION, HOUSE OF
REPRESENTATIVES, AS AMENDED, MARCH 26, 2024
AN ACT
Amending Title 75 (Vehicles) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated
Statutes, in general provisions, further providing for
definitions; in licensing of drivers, further providing for
learners' permits and for examination of applicant for
driver's license ; in rules of the road in general, further
providing for prohibiting text-based communications and
providing for prohibiting use of interactive mobile device;
in miscellaneous provisions relating to serious traffic
offenses, further providing for the offense of homicide by
vehicle and for the offense of aggravated assault by vehicle;
IN ENFORCEMENT, PROVIDING FOR DATA COLLECTION AND REPORTING
RELATING TO TRAFFIC STOPS; and imposing penalties.
This act may be referred to as Paul Miller's Law.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. The definition of "interactive wireless
communications device" in section 102 of Title 75 of the
Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes is amended to read:
§ 102. Definitions.
Subject to additional definitions contained in subsequent
provisions of this title which are applicable to specific
provisions of this title, the following words and phrases when
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used in this title shall have, unless the context clearly
indicates otherwise, the meanings given to them in this section:
* * *
"Interactive [wireless communications] mobile device." A
handheld wireless telephone, personal digital assistant, smart
phone, portable or mobile computer or similar device which can
be used for voice communication, texting, [e-mailing] emailing,
browsing the Internet [or], instant messaging[.], playing games,
taking or transmitting images, recording or broadcasting videos,
creating or sharing social media or otherwise sending or
receiving electronic data. The term does not include any of the
following:
(1) a device being used exclusively as a global
positioning or navigation system;
(2) a [system or] device that is being used in a hands-
free manner or with a hands-free accessory or system,
including one that is physically or electronically integrated
into the vehicle; [or]
(3) a [communications] device that is affixed to a mass
transit vehicle, bus or school bus[.];
(4) a mobile or handheld radio being used by a person
with an amateur radio station license issued by the Federal
Communications Commission;
(5) (4) a device being used exclusively for emergency
notification purposes;
(6) (5) a device being used exclusively by an emergency
service responder while operating an emergency vehicle and
engaged in the performance of duties; or
(7) (6) a device being used exclusively by a commercial
driver who within the scope of the individual's employment
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uses a device if the use is permitted under regulations
promulgated under 49 U.S.C. § 31136 (relating to United
States Government regulations).
* * *
Section 2. Section 1505(e)(2) of Title 75 is amended to
read:
§ 1505. Learners' permits.
* * *
(e) Authorization to test for driver's license and junior
driver's license.--A person with a learner's permit is
authorized to take the examination for a regular or junior
driver's license for the class of vehicle for which a permit is
held. Before a person under the age of 18 years may take the
examination for a junior driver's license, including a Class M
license to operate a motorcycle, the minor must:
* * *
(2) Present to the department a certification form
signed by the father, mother, guardian, person in loco
parentis or spouse of a married minor stating that the minor
applicant has:
(i) completed 65 hours of practical driving
experience accompanied as required under subsection (b);
[and]
(ii) except for a Class M license to operate a
motorcycle, the 65 hours included no less than ten hours
of nighttime driving and five hours of inclement weather
driving[.]; and
(iii) printed, at the department's discretion, or
viewed educational materials provided on the department's
publicly accessible Internet website on the dangers of
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distracted driving, which may include, but are not
limited to, written, electronic or video materials.
* * *
Section 3. Section 1508 of Title 75 is amended by adding a
subsection to read:
§ 1508. Examination of applicant for driver's license.
* * *
(c.1) Distracted driving awareness.--The portion of the
examination on traffic laws shall contain at least one question
on distracted driving relating to the driver's ability to
understand the effects of distracted driving. The driver's
manual shall include a section relating to distracted driving,
along with related penalties .
* * *
Section 4. Section 3316 of Title 75 is amended to read:
§ 3316. Prohibiting text-based communications.
(a) Prohibition.--[No driver shall operate a motor vehicle
on a highway or trafficway in this Commonwealth while using an
interactive [wireless communications] MOBILE device to send,
read or write a text-based communication while the vehicle is in
motion. A person does not send, read or write a text-based
communication when the person reads, selects or enters a
telephone number or name in an interactive [wireless
communications] MOBILE device for the purpose of activating or
deactivating a voice communication or a telephone call.
(b) [(Reserved).] EMERGENCY USE EXCEPTION.--TEXTING WHILE
DRIVING SHALL BE PERMISSIBLE BY A DRIVER OF A MOTOR VEHICLE IF
NECESSARY TO COMMUNICATE WITH A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIAL OR
OTHER EMERGENCY SERVICES TO PREVENT INJURY TO PERSONS OR
PROPERTY.
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(c) Seizure.--The provisions of this section shall not be
construed as authorizing the seizure or forfeiture of an
interactive [wireless communications] MOBILE device, unless
otherwise provided by law.
(d) Penalty.--A person who violates subsection (a) commits a
summary offense and shall, upon conviction, be sentenced to pay
a fine of $50.
(D.1) PROHIBITION ON SIMILAR CITATIONS.--A PERSON MAY NOT BE
CHARGED WITH A VIOLATION OF SECTION 3316.1 (RELATING TO
PROHIBITING USE OF INTERACTIVE MOBILE DEVICE) CONCURRENTLY WITH
A VIOLATION OF SUBSECTION (A) FOR AN OFFENSE COMMITTED AT THE
SAME TIME AND PLACE.
(e) Preemption of local ordinances.--In accordance with
section 6101 (relating to applicability and uniformity of
title), this section supersedes and preempts all ordinances of
any municipality with regard to the use of an interactive
[wireless communications] MOBILE device by the driver of a motor
vehicle.
(f) Definition.--As used in this section, the term "text-
based communication" means a text message, instant message,
electronic mail or other written communication composed or
received on an interactive [wireless communications] MOBILE
device.] Except as provided in subsection (c), a driver may not
engage in texting while driving a motor vehicle.
(b) Employer.--Except as provided under subsection (c), an
employer may not permit or require a driver of the employer to
engage in texting while driving a motor vehicle.
(c) Emergency use exception.--Texting while driving shall be
permissible by a driver of a motor vehicle if necessary to
communicate with a law enforcement official or other emergency
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services to prevent injury to persons or property.
(d) Penalties.-- Except as provided for in subsection (e), a
person who violates this section commits a summary offense. The
following shall apply:
(1) For a first conviction with no conviction of and no
plea of no contest accepted to a charge of violating this
section within the previous 60-month period, as measured from
the dates any previous convictions were obtained or pleas of
no contest were accepted to the date the current conviction
is obtained or plea of no contest is accepted, a fine of not
more than $150 shall be imposed.
(2) For a second conviction within a 60-month period of
time, as measured from the dates any previous convictions
were obtained or pleas of no contest were accepted to the
date the current conviction is obtained or plea of no contest
is accepted, a fine of not more than $250.
(3) For a third or subsequent conviction within a 60-
month period of time, as measured from the dates any previous
convictions were obtained or pleas of no contest were
accepted to the date the current conviction is obtained or
plea of no contest is accepted, a fine of not more than $500.
(e) Warning period.--For the first 12 months after the
effective date of this subsection, a driver who violates
subsection (a) may only be issued a written warning for a
violation.
(f) Law enforcement education.--The department, in
consultation with the Pennsylvania State Police, shall develop
and electronically distribute education materials for law
enforcement on how to effectively detect distracted drivers,
regardless of age, sex, race or ethnicity, who violate this
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section.
(g) Prohibition on similar citations.--A person may not be
charged with a violation of section 3316.1 (relating to
prohibiting use of interactive mobile device) concurrently with
a violation of subsection (a) for an offense committed at the
same time and place.
(h) Definitions.--As used in this section, the following
words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this
subsection unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Driving." Operating a motor vehicle on a highway, including
while the motor vehicle is temporarily stationary because of
traffic, a traffic control device or other momentary delay. The
term does not include operating a motor vehicle if the driver
moved the vehicle to the side of or off of a highway and halted
in a location where the vehicle can safely remain stationary.
"Electronic device." The term includes, but is not limited
to, a cellular telephone, personal digital assistant, pager,
computer or any other device used to input, write, send, receive
or read text or images.
"Texting." Manually entering alphanumeric text into or
reading text from an electronic device. The following shall
apply:
(1) The term includes, but is not limited to, short
message service, emailing, instant messaging, a command or
request to access an Internet web page, pressing more than a
single button to initiate or terminate a voice communication
using a mobile telephone or engaging in any other form of
electronic text retrieval or entry, for present or future
communication.
(2) The term does not include:
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(i) Inputting, selecting or reading information on a
global positioning system or navigation system.
(ii) Pressing a single button to initiate or
terminate a voice communication using a mobile telephone.
(iii) Using a device capable of performing multiple
functions, including fleet management systems,
dispatching devices, citizens band radios and music
players, for a purpose that is not prohibited by this
section.
Section 5. Title 75 is amended by adding a section to read:
§ 3316.1. Prohibiting use of interactive mobile device.
(a) Motor vehicle.--Except as provided under subsection (c)
(B) , a driver may not NO DRIVER SHALL use an interactive mobile
device while driving a motor vehicle.
(b) Employer.--Except as provided under subsection (c), an
employer may not permit or require a driver of the employer to
use an interactive mobile device while driving a motor vehicle.
(c) (B) Emergency use exception.--Using an interactive
mobile device shall be permissible by a driver of a motor
vehicle if necessary to communicate with a law enforcement
official or other emergency services to prevent injury to
persons or property.
(d) (C) Penalties.-- Except as provided for in subsection (g)
subsections (g) and (h) , a person who violates this section
commits a summary offense AND SHALL, UPON CONVICTION, BE
SENTENCED TO PAY A FINE OF $50 . The following shall apply:
(1) For a first conviction with no conviction of and no
plea of no contest accepted to a charge of violating this
section within the previous 60-month period, as measured from
the dates any previous convictions were obtained or pleas of
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no contest were accepted to the date the current conviction
is obtained or plea of no contest is accepted, a fine of not
more than $150 shall be imposed.
(2) For a second conviction within a 60-month period of
time, as measured from the dates any previous convictions
were obtained or pleas of no contest were accepted to the
date the current conviction is obtained or plea of no contest
is accepted, a fine of not more than $250.
(3) For a third or subsequent conviction within a 60-
month period of time, as measured from the dates any previous
convictions were obtained or pleas of no contest were
accepted to the date the current conviction is obtained or
plea of no contest is accepted, a fine of not more than $500 .
(e) (D) Preemption of local ordinances.--In accordance with
section 6101 (relating to applicability and uniformity of
title), this section supersedes and preempts all ordinances of
any municipality with regard to the use of an interactive mobile
device by a driver of a motor vehicle.
(E) SEIZURE.--NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO
AUTHORIZE THE SEIZURE OR FORFEITURE OF AN INTERACTIVE MOBILE
DEVICE, UNLESS OTHERWISE PROVIDED BY LAW.
(f) Law enforcement education.--The department, in
consultation with the Pennsylvania State Police, shall develop
and electronically distribute education materials for law
enforcement on how to effectively detect distracted drivers,
regardless of age, sex, race or ethnicity, who violate this
section.
(g) Warning period.--For the first 12 months after the
effective date of this subsection, a driver who violates
subsection (a) may only be issued a written warning for a
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violation.
(h) Secondary offense.--No person shall be convicted of a
violation of this section unless the person is also convicted of
another violation of this title, excluding a violation of
section 3316 (relating to prohibiting text-based
communications), which occurred at the same time.
(h) (i) Prohibition on similar citations.-- A person may not
be charged with a violation of section 3316 (relating to
prohibiting text-based communications) concurrently with a
violation of subsection (a) for an offense committed at the same
time and place.
(i) (j) Definitions.--As used in this section, the following
words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this
subsection unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Driving." Operating a motor vehicle on a highway, including
while the motor vehicle is temporarily stationary because of
traffic, a traffic control device or other momentary delay. The
term does not include operating a motor vehicle if the driver
moved the vehicle to the side of or off of a highway and halted
in a location where the vehicle can safely remain stationary.
"Use an interactive mobile device." As follows:
(1) Using at least one hand to hold, or supporting with
another part of the body, an interactive mobile device .
(2) Dialing or answering an interactive mobile device by
pressing more than a single button.
(3) Reaching for an interactive mobile device in a
manner that requires a driver to maneuver so that the driver
is no longer in a seated driving position, restrained by a
seat belt that is installed in accordance with 49 CFR 393.93
(relating to seats, seat belt assemblies, and seat belt
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assembly anchorages) and adjusted in accordance with the
vehicle manufacturer's instructions.
Section 6. Sections 3732(b)(1.1) and (3) and 3732.1(b)(2)
and (4) of Title 75 are amended to read:
§ 3732. Homicide by vehicle.
* * *
(b) Sentencing.--
* * *
(1.1) In addition to any other penalty provided by law,
a person convicted of a violation of subsection (a) who is
also convicted of a violation of section 1501 (relating to
drivers required to be licensed), 1543 (relating to driving
while operating privilege is suspended or revoked), 3316
(relating to prohibiting text-based communications), 3316.1
(relating to prohibiting use of interactive mobile device),
3325 (relating to duty of driver on approach of emergency
vehicle) or 3327 (relating to duty of driver in emergency
response areas and in relation to disabled vehicles) may be
sentenced to an additional term not to exceed five years'
confinement.
* * *
(3) The Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing, pursuant
to 42 Pa.C.S. § 2154 (relating to adoption of guidelines for
sentencing), shall provide for a sentencing enhancement for
an offense under this section when the violation occurred in
an active work zone or the individual was also convicted of a
violation of section 1501, 1543, 3316, 3316.1, 3325 or 3327.
§ 3732.1. Aggravated assault by vehicle.
* * *
(b) Sentencing.--
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* * *
(2) In addition to any other penalty provided by law, a
person convicted of a violation of subsection (a) who is also
convicted of a violation of section 1501 (relating to drivers
required to be licensed), 1543 (relating to driving while
operating privilege is suspended or revoked), 3316 (relating
to prohibiting text-based communications), 3316.1 (relating
to prohibiting use of interactive mobile device), 3325
(relating to duty of driver on approach of emergency vehicle)
or 3327 (relating to duty of driver in emergency response
areas and in relation to disabled vehicles) may be sentenced
to an additional term not to exceed two years' confinement.
* * *
(4) The Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing, under 42
Pa.C.S. § 2154 (relating to adoption of guidelines for
sentencing), shall provide for a sentencing enhancement for
an offense under this section when the violation occurred in
an active work zone or the individual was also convicted of a
violation of section 1501, 1543, 3316, 3316.1, 3325 or 3327.
Section 7. This act shall take effect in 12 months.
SECTION 7. TITLE 75 IS AMENDED BY ADDING A SECTION TO READ:
§ 6329. DATA COLLECTION AND REPORTING RELATING TO TRAFFIC
STOPS.
(A) DATA COLLECTION.--NOTWITHSTANDING ANY LAW TO THE
CONTRARY, A PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE OFFICER OR A LOCAL POLICE
OFFICER SHALL COLLECT, IN A FORM AND MANNER DETERMINED BY THE
PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE, THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION FOR ANY
SELF-INITIATED TRAFFIC STOP MADE UNDER THIS TITLE AS AUTHORIZED
UNDER SECTION 6308 (RELATING TO INVESTIGATION BY POLICE
OFFICERS):
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(1) THE REASON FOR THE TRAFFIC STOP.
(2) THE PERCEIVED RACE AND ETHNICITY OF THE DRIVER
SUBJECT TO THE TRAFFIC STOP.
(3) THE GENDER AND AGE OF THE DRIVER SUBJECT TO THE
TRAFFIC STOP.
(4) WHETHER A SEARCH WAS INITIATED, INCLUDING A SEARCH
OF A VEHICLE OR THE VEHICLE OPERATOR OR PASSENGERS, AND, IF A
SEARCH WAS INITIATED, WHETHER THE SEARCH WAS CONDUCTED WITH
THE CONSENT OF THE OPERATOR OR PASSENGERS.
(5) THE RESULTS OF A SEARCH.
(6) WHETHER THE TRAFFIC STOP OR SUBSEQUENT SEARCH
RESULTED IN A WARNING, CITATION, ARREST OR OTHER ACTION.
(7) ANY ADDITIONAL INFORMATION THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE
POLICE DEEMS NECESSARY.
(B) EFFECT OF FAILURE TO COLLECT DATA.--THE FAILURE OF A
MEMBER OF THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE OR A LOCAL POLICE
OFFICER TO COLLECT THE DATA UNDER SUBSECTION (A) SHALL NOT
AFFECT THE VALIDITY OF THE UNDERLYING TRAFFIC STOP.
(C) REPORT BY LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENTS.--ON AN ANNUAL BASIS,
A LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENT SHALL TRANSMIT THE DATA COLLECTED
UNDER SUBSECTION (A) BY THE LOCAL POLICE OFFICERS EMPLOYED BY
THE LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENT TO THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE, OR
A THIRD PARTY DESIGNATED BY THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE WITH
EXPERIENCE IN THE ANALYSIS OF SUCH DATA, FOR THE PREPARATION OF
AN ANNUAL ANALYSIS AND REPORT BASED ON THE DATA. UPON RECEIPT OF
THE DATA, THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE OR THE THIRD PARTY SHALL
IMMEDIATELY MAKE THE ANNUAL ANALYSIS AND REPORT, INCLUDING ANY
AGGREGATE ANALYSIS OF THE DATA, PUBLICLY AVAILABLE BY POSTING
THE ANNUAL ANALYSIS AND REPORT ON A PUBLICLY ACCESSIBLE INTERNET
WEBSITE AND TRANSMIT A COPY OF THE ANNUAL ANALYSIS AND REPORT TO
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ALL OF THE FOLLOWING:
(1) THE CHAIR AND MINORITY CHAIR OF THE TRANSPORTATION
COMMITTEE OF THE SENATE.
(2) THE CHAIR AND MINORITY CHAIR OF THE TRANSPORTATION
COMMITTEE OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES.
(3) THE PENNSYLVANIA COMMISSION ON CRIME AND
DELINQUENCY.
(4) THE PENNSYLVANIA HUMAN RELATIONS COMMISSION.
(D) GUIDANCE AND DIRECTIVES.--THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE
SHALL ISSUE GUIDANCE TO ALL OF THE FOLLOWING:
(1) IF APPLICABLE, A THIRD PARTY DESIGNATED BY THE
PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE ON THE ORGANIZATION AND APPEARANCE
OF AN ANALYSIS AND REPORT REQUIRED UNDER SUBSECTION (C).
(2) EACH LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENT ON THE REQUIRED METHOD,
MANNER AND SCHEDULE FOR TRANSMITTING THE DATA COLLECTED UNDER
SUBSECTION (A) TO THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE OR A THIRD
PARTY DESIGNATED BY THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE UNDER
SUBSECTION (C).
(E) INTERDEPARTMENTAL COOPERATION.--LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENTS
MAY ENTER INTO AGREEMENTS AND JOINTLY COOPERATE FOR THE PURPOSE
OF DEVELOPING, SHARING OR IMPLEMENTING A SYSTEM THAT SATISFIES
THIS SECTION.
(F) APPLICABILITY.--
(1) THE REQUIREMENTS UNDER THIS SECTION DO NOT APPLY TO
A LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENT THAT, ON THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS
PARAGRAPH, IS COLLECTING THE DATA SPECIFIED IN SUBSECTION
(A), PROVIDING THE DATA TO A THIRD PARTY FOR ANALYSIS AND
MAKING THE RESULTS AVAILABLE TO THE PUBLIC.
(2) IF A LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENT STOPS COLLECTING THE
DATA UNDER SUBSECTION (A), PROVIDING THE DATA TO A THIRD
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PARTY FOR ANALYSIS OR MAKING THE RESULTS AVAILABLE TO THE
PUBLIC, THE LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENT SHALL BE SUBJECT TO THE
REQUIREMENTS UNDER THIS SECTION.
(G) CONSTRUCTION.--NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE
CONSTRUED TO PROHIBIT DATA COLLECTED UNDER THIS SECTION FROM
BEING SHARED WITH ORGANIZATIONS THAT COMPILE NATIONAL DATA
STATISTICS. DATA COLLECTED UNDER SUBSECTION (A) SHALL NOT BE
ACCESSIBLE UNDER THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 14, 2008 (P.L.6, NO.3),
KNOWN AS THE RIGHT-TO-KNOW LAW.
(H) DEFINITIONS.--AS USED IN THIS SECTION, THE FOLLOWING
WORDS AND PHRASES SHALL HAVE THE MEANINGS GIVEN TO THEM IN THIS
SUBSECTION UNLESS THE CONTEXT CLEARLY INDICATES OTHERWISE:
"LOCAL POLICE DEPARTMENT." A POLICE DEPARTMENT THAT IS:
(1) A REGIONAL POLICE DEPARTMENT THAT PROVIDES POLICE
SERVICES TO MORE THAN ONE MUNICIPALITY PURSUANT TO AN
AGREEMENT OR CONTRACT AND SERVES A TOTAL POPULATION OF MORE
THAN 5,000 ACCORDING TO THE 2020 FEDERAL DECENNIAL CENSUS; OR
(2) A MUNICIPAL POLICE DEPARTMENT FOR A MUNICIPALITY
WITH A POPULATION OF MORE THAN 5,000 ACCORDING TO THE 2020
FEDERAL DECENNIAL CENSUS.
"LOCAL POLICE OFFICER." AN EMPLOYEE OF A LOCAL POLICE
DEPARTMENT WHO IS EMPOWERED TO:
(1) ENFORCE 18 PA.C.S. (RELATING TO CRIMES AND OFFENSES)
AND THIS TITLE.
(2) MAKE TRAFFIC STOPS UNDER SECTION 6308.
"SELF-INITIATED TRAFFIC STOP." A TRAFFIC STOP, REGARDLESS OF
THE OUTCOME, THAT WAS INITIATED AS A RESULT OF A REASONABLE
SUSPICION OR PROBABLE CAUSE OF A VIOLATION OF TRAFFIC OR
CRIMINAL LAW.
SECTION 8. THIS ACT SHALL TAKE EFFECT AS FOLLOWS:
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(1) THIS SECTION SHALL TAKE EFFECT IMMEDIATELY.
(2) THE ADDITION OF 75 PA.C.S. § 6329 SHALL TAKE EFFECT
IN 18 MONTHS.
(3) THE REMAINDER OF THIS ACT SHALL TAKE EFFECT IN 12
MONTHS.
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