MN State Lawmakers Oppose Ignition Interlock GPS Tracking

smartphone-1283012_1280Lawmakers in the Minnesota state legislature are responding to concerns that the Minnesota Department of Public Safety is looking into adding new GPS technology to ignition interlock devices.

According to a report from Minnesota Lawyer, support to stop the Minnesota DPS from implementing the technology is bipartisan. Legislation is being proposed by Rep. Peggy Scott (R-Andover), with Rep. John Lesch (DFL-St. Paul) expected to co-sponsor.

“The commissioner may not establish standards that, directly or indirectly, require devices to utilize or enable location tracking capabilities,” reads the draft of the bill, according to the report.

Supporters of the anti-GPS technology have argued that the DPS idea would be unconstitutional and was never authorized by the 2010 law allowing the use of ignition interlock devices.

Ignition interlock is available to first and second time DWI offenders as a means to allow them to regain their driving privileges. Those in the program must blow into the interlock before they’re able to start their vehicles. If they’re found to be intoxicated, vehicles won’t start.

Those believing in the unconstitutionality of the ignition interlock device GPS proposal appear to believe it would violate citizen protections against data gathering.

The state legislature is expected to hold a meeting regarding the issue in January. It’s currently estimated that around 11,000 Minnesotans utilize the ignition interlock as a means to regain their driving privileges early after drunk driving arrests.