Use of a Portable Electronic Device While Driving * * *

23 V.S.A. § 4(82) is amended to read:

(82) Portable electronic device means a portable electronic or computing device, including a cellular telephone, personal digital assistant (PDA), or laptop computer. Portable electronic device does not include a two-way or Citizens Band radio, or equipment used by a licensed Amateur Radio operator in accordance with 47 C.F.R. part 97.

23 V.S.A. § 1095b - HANDHELD USE OF PORTABLE ELECTRONIC DEVICE – which takes effect on October 1, 2014 is amended to read:

(a) Definition. As used in this section, hands-free use means the use of a portable electronic device without use of either hand by employing an internal feature of, or an attachment to, the device.

(b) Use of handheld portable electronic device in prohibited. A person shall not use a portable electronic device while operating a moving motor vehicle on a highway in Vermont. The prohibition of this subsection shall not apply:

(1) to hands-free use;

(2) to activation or deactivation of hands-free use, as long as the device is in a cradle or otherwise securely mounted in the vehicle and the cradle or other accessory for secure mounting is not affixed to the windshield in violation of section 1125 of this title;

(3) when use of a portable electronic device is necessary for a person to communicate with law enforcement or emergency service personnel under emergency circumstances; or

(4) to use of an ignition interlock device, as defined in section 1200 of this title.

(c) Penalties.
(1) A person who violates this section commits a traffic violation and shall be subject to a fine of not less than $100.00 and not more than $200.00 for a first violation, and of not less than $250.00 and not more than $500.00 for a second or subsequent violation within any two-year period.

(2) A person convicted of violating this section while operating within a properly designated work zone in which construction, maintenance, or utility personnel are present shall have two points assessed against his or her driving record for a first conviction and five points assessed for a second or subsequent conviction.

(3) A person convicted of violating this section outside a work zone in which personnel are present shall not have points assessed against his or her driving record.

(d)(1) Operators of commercial motor vehicles shall be governed by the provisions of chapter 39 of this title (Commercial Driver License Act) instead of the provisions of this chapter with respect to the handheld use of mobile telephones and texting while operating a commercial motor vehicle.

(2) A person shall not be issued more than one complaint for any violation of this section, section 1095a of this title (junior operator use of portable electronic devices), or section 1099 of this title (texting prohibited) that arises from the same incident.