In all, 120 new laws took effect in Colorado on August 5th. Among the updated laws will be punishing habitual drunken drivers with felonies and longer prison sentences. The tougher punishments on repeat DUI offenders took years to pass.
Colorado has been among five states where habitual drunken drivers are charged only with misdemeanors regardless of how many times they're arrested. Those against the stricter punishment worried about increased costs to imprison offenders and argued that investing in substance abuse treatment was a wiser option.
But gut-wrenching crashes involving drunken drivers with several previous convictions made it difficult for lawmakers to continue to oppose the legislation.