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For Immediate Release
November 27, 2002
Contact: Dan A. Gwadosky
207-626-8400

Secretary Gwadosky to Address Legislative Youth Advisory Council
Troubled by this year's 46 fatalities among 16 to 24 year old drivers, Secretary seeks
input from Youth Council on additional safety initiatives

Monday, December 2, 2002 at 9:15 a.m.
Education Committee Room
Room 214, Cross State Office Building

Secretary of State Dan A. Gwadosky will be addressing the Legislative Youth Advisory Council at 9:15 a.m. on Monday, December 2, 2002 in the Education Committee Room (Room 214) of the Cross State Office Building. Secretary Gwadosky's topic will be Maine's Newest Drivers at Risk. Secretary Gwadosky is seeking to obtain insight from, and begin a dialogue with, the Youth Advisory Council as his department contemplates additional legislative initiatives in the area of young drivers. Troubled by this year's increase in fatalities of 16 to 24 year olds (currently at 46, an increase from 39 fatalities in 2001 and 41 in 2000), Secretary Gwadosky is committed to working with the Maine Legislature to consider further legislative action.

Over the past several years, the Department of the Secretary of State has sought to involve parents in their teenager's driving education and have encouraged parents and teens to communicate with each other about the responsibilities of driving. Secretary Gwadosky developed legislation for some of the most sweeping changes in driver education, licensing and testing in the last 40 years. Those changes included requiring 35 hours of driving time with an adult (preferably a parent) before requesting a road test, increasing the provisional license period from one year to two years, and increasing the suspension period for moving violations during the two year provisional period.

Secretary Gwadosky also developed a Young Driver Contract that is available to help families open up the lines of communication regarding these important issues. A copy of the Young Driver Contract is available at www.state.me.us/sos/news/youngdriver.htm.