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June 12--  Vidalia police are warning drivers they may face fines and loss of drivers license points if they hold cellphones while driving when a new state law takes effect July 1st.

On the radio program "Vidalia Today" Tuesday, Police Chief Frank Waits said, "We're going to have people who get very angry because they're not wanting to accept it.  It's kind of like back when they did the seat belts, i.e., this is my ship, I drive it and if I want to wear a seat belt, I will, and if I don't, then I won't.  You are going to have people with the same mentality, it's my car and I want to use a cellphone I will.

"The only thing about it, this is way worse than the seat belt law because it has points attached to it.  First offense, $50 fine and one point off your drivers license. Second offense, $100 fine and two points.  Third offense and more is $150 and three points.  Those add up quickly," he noted.

The police department has no grace period for drivers after July 1st, however, Chief Waits says tickets will be at the discretion of individual patrol officers,"This law falls under officer discretion.  If the officers thinks a warning will suffice, he or she will write a warning , or they can write you a citation, it's officer  discretion."

The department has pamphlets will full details on the new law that you can pick up at the police department or you can see one on line at


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