State to use money to fight drunken driving

Posted: Thursday, August 23, 2001

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A $668,000 grant Alaska received from the federal government for lowering the blood alcohol level to .08 will be used to fight drunken driving, the governor's office said.

Alaska and 26 other states lowered the legal limit for driving drunk and are sharing in almost $77 million in incentive grants from the Federal Department of Transportation.

''Nearly half of all traffic fatalities on Alaska roads over the last decade were alcohol related. We must continue to do all we can to reduce that tragic statistic and this money will be a welcome boost to our ongoing efforts,'' Gov. Tony Knowles said in a news release.

The grant money will be used on existing programs.

The governor signed the legislation lowering the legal limit to .08 in July. It was accompanied by other bills that stiffen penalties for repeat drunken drivers and people who sell alcohol illegally, while also providing more treatment incentives for minors.

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