By Bob Katzen
The House Ways and Means Committee has recommended passage of a bill that would require two copies of a highly-reflective decal or other symbol to be clearly visible to law enforcement officers on the window of any vehicle being operated by a driver with a learner’s permit or a junior operator’s license. The size, fee and other details would be determined by the Registry of Motor Vehicles. A violation of the requirement would result in a fine up to $50.
Supporters say this would warn other motorists that the driver is inexperienced and encourage them to take extra caution. They say the requirement would likely reduce the frustration of other motorists, reduce unnecessary honking, prevent injuries and maybe even save lives.
Some opponents say the bill is a solution in search of a problem that doesn’t exist. They note that families with more than one car would have to get two decals for each car and note that if a permanent decal is used, experienced drivers would often be driving the car with the decal and be mistaken for a novice behind the wheel. They argue that some motorists might pass student drivers illegally on a double yellow line to avoid being stuck behind someone learning to drive.