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Wisconsin bill would ban new drivers from using cell phones

Madison (AP) — A Wisconsin lawmaker is proposing a measure that would prohibit new drivers from using cell phones behind the wheel.

The measure would cover texting and talking on phones, even if the driver uses a hands-free headset.

Democratic state Rep. Sandy Pasch of Milwaukee says the Legislature should discuss banning everyone from using a cell phone while driving. But she says legislation covering younger drivers is a good first step.

A similar plan died in the Legislature last session.

Doyle says he focused on health care, alternative energy in Japan

Madison (AP) — Gov. Jim Doyle says he promoted Wisconsin’s strengths in medical equipment and alternative energy during his trade mission in Japan.

Doyle spoke Tuesday after he visited a hospital that has launched a radiation therapy system sold by Madison-based TomoTherapy.

Doyle says he has been promoting equipment made by TomoTherapy and GE Health Care, which already export from Wisconsin to Japan.

The governor also had a meeting with a wind energy company interested in testing a new turbine at Lakeshore Technical College in Cleveland, Wis.

Democrats promise to tackle drunken driving, job creation

Madison (AP) — Democrats who control the state Assembly promise to focus on creating jobs and cracking down on drunken driving this fall.

On Thursday, the Assembly plans to vote on a bill that toughens drunken driving penalties. It will make the fourth offense a felony and require ignition interlock devices for repeat offenders.

There is no consensus on a jobs-creation bill introduced by Rep. Cory Mason, D-Racine. His bill would raise the income tax on those earning more than $1 million to funnel more money to technical colleges to help retrain workers.

The Assembly’s fall session begins Wednesday and is scheduled to conclude in early November.

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