Skubick: Remote car starting legislation stuck in neutral

LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – It’s a common practice during winter to start your car, go inside the house and wait for it to warm up.

But that is currently against the law.

A bill to make it legal was set for a House committee vote today but was suddenly put on hold.

“I have major concerns with it because joyriding by teens or people who steal cars,” explained Rep. John Chirkun. “They can end up in crimes and hurting somebody.”

The House Transportation Committee was set this morning to pass legislation that would make the practice legal but instead of voting on it, the chairman pulled it from the agenda.

There is some 11th hour concern over the use of automatic starters that allow you to start the car but lock it, which makes it difficult for somebody to steal.

The chair still wants the bill but wants more time to rewrite it.

“I’m still very much in favor of protecting property rights and being able to warm-up up their vehicles,” said Rep. Triston Cole.

Rep. Cole wants to make sure the automatic starter doesn’t ruin the bill.

Democratic Rep. John Chirkun is a former deputy sheriff.

He wants to kill the bill but understands that probably won’t happen.

“You are probably right,” says Rep. Chirkun. “But I have an amendment that will criminally prosecute anybody who leaves their keys in a car and that can results in an accident resulting in death and negligent homicide with jail sentences and a fine.

It’s unclear when the committee will vote on all this.

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