JUNEAU, Alaska — The state House Judiciary Committee approved a bill trying to clarify Alaska's driving while texting laws on Friday.
According to committee chair Rep. Carl Gatto (R-Palmer), judges in Kenai and Fairbanks are not enforcing the current texting while driving law because it doesn't specifically mention "texting."
The new law includes the phrase "driving while texting."
Bill sponsor Rep. Les Gara (D-Anchorage) has said his new proposal would allow talking on the phone, including dialing a number and answering a call, but it would outlaw texting and associated activities like tweeting.
Texting while the car was stopped, like at a red light, would be allowed, Gara has said.
Rep. Bill Thomas (R-Haines) is also a prime sponsor of the bill.
Rep. Wes Keller (R-Wasilla) said he didn't approve of the bill, and recommended against its final passage in the House.
"Reading a text message is such a miniscule action -- to make it illegal, I just can't go there," Keller said.