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Go To Jail For Excessive Speeding In 2011

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(Credit: CBS)

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Updated: 12/28/10 9:03 p.m.

CHICAGO (WBBM/CBS) – If you have a lead foot, you’ll want to ease up on the pedal in 2011. In just a few days, a new Illinois law will crack down on aggressive drivers.

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s Nancy Harty reports, in a recent tally, 63 percent of Chicago area drivers ticketed for going over 100 mph received supervision, according to a published report. Forty percent of such drivers received supervision statewide.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Nancy Harty Reports

But a new state law will change all that.

“Enough is enough. We will no longer, or stand idly by and allow individuals who drive at that rate of speed and not have to pay a price for it,” Secretary of State Jesse White said.

As CBS 2’s Susanna Song reports, the new law specifically targets drivers who speed in excess of 40 mph from the legal limit.

They will no longer receive court supervision, which means they won’t be off the hook simply after taking a driving class or participating in community service and the ticket will stay on their record.

“It was a big problem,” admitted White.

White initiated Public Act 96-1002, which prohibits the issuance of court supervision to drivers tickets for speeding 40 mph or more above the posted speed limit.

Under the new law, speeders will also face tougher penalties, such as a $2,500 fine and up to a year in jail.

According to the State Patrol records, in 2010 there were 309 speeding tickets issued on Chicago expressways to drivers who sped 40 mph or more above the limit. Consider that a 37 percent increase since 2009, when there were just 195.

Chicago drivers CBS 2 spoke to, welcome the change.

“Court supervision was too lenient. It’s a way to get out of the real penalty of breaking the law,” said Greg Owens, a bus driver from Calumet City.

Another woman from Wisconsin agreed, and added, “The raise in the fine will prevent people from speeding. Oh, yeah, definitely, who wants to pay it?”

But others questions the effect.

“I would like to believe it would, but if people are going to speed, unfortunately they’ll speed,” chimed in one passerby near the Thompson Center.

Going 30 to 39 mph over the limit could result in six months in prison, a fine of $1,500, and probation.

State Rep. John D’Amico (D-Chicago) and Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) were the sponsors of the bill.

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