Grant recipients shall use the money received through the grant program for the following purposes:
- To provide funding for the certification or recertification of child passenger safety technicians;
- To educate families on the child passenger safety laws; or
- To create child restraint system distribution programs for families of children who do not have a legally compliant child restraint system.
The bill creates the child passenger safety education and distribution grant program fund (fund) to pay for the grant program. The fund consists of general fund money and any other gifts, grants, or donations that the department receives. The department may use money from the fund to pay the direct and indirect costs that the department incurs to administer the grant program.
The bill changes the child restraint system requirements in existing law as follows:
- Increases the age at which children are required to use a child restraint system from under 8 years of age to under 9 years of age and adds that a child under 57 inches in height, regardless of age, must use a child restrain system;
- Increases the age, from under one year of age to under 2 years of age, and the weight, from under 20 pounds to under 40 pounds, of children who must be restrained in a rear-facing child restraint system in a rear seat of the vehicle;
- Increases the age, from one year of age or older to 2 years of age or older, of children who must be restrained in a rear-facing or forward-facing child restraint system in a rear seat of the vehicle, if a rear seat is available;
- Adds a requirement that children who are at least 4 years of age but under 9 years of age and who weigh at least 40 pounds utilize a booster seat, which must be situated in a rear seat of the vehicle, if a rear seat is available; and
- Adds a requirement that children who are at least 9 years of age but under 13 years of age sit in the rear seat of a vehicle, if a rear seat is available, and be properly secured with a safety belt.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)