State Senator Richard Codey wants fines for drivers who text while stopped at a red light or stop signs.
Yes it's about safety, but it's also about the state getting federal funds.
DWD spells trouble on the roads.
Driving While Distracted is a big problem.
In New Jersey, it's illegal to text and talk on your cellphone unless its hands free.
Now State Senator Richard Codey wants to make it illegal to text on your phone when you stop at a red light or stop sign.
State Senator Codey says texting while driving is no different than driving drunk. In fact he says its worse.
By expanding the law he says accidents can be prevented, lives will be saved.
Also, New Jersey would qualify for a $17 million federal grant that can be spent on campaigns to raise awareness about distracted driving.
Roseland Police Chief Richard McDonough says it's a big problem in his town.
His officers have issued almost a thousand citations to people texting and driving.
But critics say Codey's idea is nothing more than a money making venture for the state.
Still, some drivers feel something should be done to deter people.
Starting next July, fines for driving while texting or talking on a cell phone are going up.
Fines for first offenders range from $100 to $400.
Second time offenders will pay a $400 fine.
Third time offenders will face a $600 fine and their license may be suspended.