State Senate passes measure to beef up penalties - - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - |

State Senate passes measure to beef up penalties

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- A bill to impose stiff jail sentences for repeatedly selling alcohol to anyone under 21 years old is one step away from going to the governor.

The state Senate approved the measure on Tuesday and sent it back to the House. If the House accepts Senate changes, it would go to Gov. Brad Henry.

The Governor's Task Force on Prevention of Underage Drinking, comprised of alcohol abuse prevention specialists, law enforcement officers and lawmakers, has endorsed the measure.

The plan would allow prison sentences of up to five years and fines of up to $5,000 for servers caught repeatedly selling beer or other alcohol to minors.

The bill would also suspend a business' permit to sell beer if the company repeatedly sells beer to minors. Teenagers caught illegally purchasing beer could also face a fine of up to $900 and the loss of their driver's license for up to two years.

Principal authors of the legislation are Rep. Thad Balkman, R-Norman, and Sen. Jeff Rabon, D-Hugo.
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