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Virginia Mulls Repeal of Radar Detector Ban
A member of Virginia's House of Delegates is pushing for a repeal of the state's ban on the possession of a radar detector.

Delegate Joe T. May
Virginia Delegate Joe T. May, (R-Leesburg) is working to repeal the state's law making it a crime to possess a radar detector in an automobile. Earlier this month May introduced HB 1120 which would eliminate the $96 ticket police currently issue to those caught with the device -- whether it was in use or not.

"Is your objective to keep people in the speed limit, or is your objective to issue citations?" May asked in the Winchester Star newspaper. He explained the ban provides a "rude welcome" to visitors from the forty-nine states that have no such law and are among its most frequent recipients.

The tendency for the law to target outsiders and discourage commerce is one reason why the Virginia Retail Merchants Association, an influential organization that has represented local business in the state for a century, has recently added its weight behind the repeal effort. It's also a priority for the National Motorists Association which has set up a website providing background and updates on the legislative effort at

"Virginia is the only state that still bans the sale and use of these otherwise commonplace devices," said Eric Skrum, the group's spokesman. "There is no research that suggests that by doing so, Virginia has improved its highway safety. On the contrary, Virginia's ban prohibits innovative safety programs that use radar pulses to warn motorists with detectors about road hazards. Several states are utilizing this technology to save lives and prevent accidents."

Article Excerpt:
Virginia House of Delegates
Offered January 11, 2006
A BILL to repeal § 46.2-1079 of the Code of Virginia, relating to radar detectors.
Patron-- May
Referred to Committee on Transportation

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1. That § 46.2-1079 of the Code of Virginia is repealed.
Source: May Introduces Legislation to Repeal Radar Ban (Winchester Star (VA), 1/23/2006)

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