- Associated Press - Friday, June 13, 2014

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A proposed increase in the first-time penalty for using a handheld cell phone or other electronic device while driving is making progress in the Delaware General Assembly.

The News Journal (https://delonline.us/1lob2e5 ) of Wilmington reports that the House of Representatives approved a measure Thursday that would boost the penalty for first-time offenders from $50 to $75. Repeat offenders face fines of $200.

The bill was introduced by Republican Rep. Joe Miro.

The legislation now heads to the Senate.

Delaware law enforcement officers issued nearly 20,000 citations last year to drivers caught texting or talking on cell phones without a hands-free device. That’s up more than 48 percent from a year earlier.

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