Governor Tom Vilsack signed a tougher drunk-driving law into effect this morning. Starting July 1st, Iowans who have a blood alcohol level of point-oh-eight percent or above will be guilty of drunken driving. Wanda Farrell of Hudson lobbied for the tougher law because in 1996 her 16-year-old daughter Julie Ann was killed by a driver who had a point-oh-eight-seven blood alcohol level.Farrell says having to bury your own child is the worst thing that can ever happen to you. Farrell says picking out the casket, finding the clothes for them to wear and realizing it’ll be the last time you’ll ever seen them is hard. Farrell was on hand when the Governor signed the bill, and she was thinking about her daughter. Farrell says she would have given anything not to have lived through the experience of losing her daughter, but Farrell says that’s not tHe way things turned out and “you have to play the cards you’re dealt” so she decided to become an advocate for tougher drunk driving laws. Farrell says in some ways, today’s bill signing gave some meaning to her daughter’s tragic death. The federal government threatened to withhold millions of dollars in road construction money if Iowa hadn’t passed the point-oh-eight drunk driving law.
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