*Although not affected by Kadyn's Law, it is important to remember that certain driving offenses that cause unintentional serious injury or death to another person may be charged as homicide or serious injury by vehicle, which are felonies. These felonies carry significant higher penalties and sanctions, including fines of up to $10,000, mandatory restitution of $150,000, mandatory imprisonment of 25 years, and mandatory suspension of driving privileges for six years for a class "B" felony conviction. The Iowa DOT also may suspend the driving privilege of a person convicted for a moving violation that contributed to a fatal motor vehicle accident for up to one year.
Although misdemeanor convictions do not pose the same penalties as felony convictions, they often have other effects on a person's life. Employers often run background checks, and when they do, a misdemeanor is a criminal offense that will appear on the report. A misdemeanor can also cause problems with obtaining security clearances.
Kim Snook, former director of the Iowa DOT's Driver & Identification Services, said, "We hope that these increased penalties and sanctions will make driver's think twice before foolishly choosing to pass a stopped school bus. More than thinking about their own penalty, however, we hope they will remember and recognize that passing a stopped school bus threatens the life of a child. The few seconds gained is not worth risking a child's life."
The Iowa departments of Transportation, Public Safety, and Education, the University of Iowa-National Advanced Driving Simulator, and the Iowa State University-Center for Transportation Research and Education have teamed up to provide additional public education on school bus safety and to complete a study on school bus safety.