We here advocate for…..


          The mandatory use of CAMERA-EQUIPPED ignition interlock devices.


          The ignition interlock program to be enforced by MVD in New Mexico.


          Ignition interlock service provision to be performed by no more than 2 (two) companies.


          The service provision contract to be awarded through the traditional RFP process.


          We ask that the above be addenda or amendments to SB501, 46th Legislature, First Session, 2003. Senators Kent Cravens, Phil A. Griego.


            As constituent advocates, we express that the above changes to SB501 would bring about exceptionally positive and much needed improvements to the ignition interlock program in New Mexico.




        FIRST COVERAGE WAS CHANNEL 2 AND 13 TV, 1-16-09. Copies of the video available on request.







                    The success of SB501 has left an opportunity to greatly improve the IID law.


An untenable series of negative situations are left in the wake of SB501.


(From here, we refer to the Ignition Interlock program as “IID program”)


          Bureaucracy choked and asphyxiated any chance the IID program ever had to fully succeed. This, coupled with the choice of the absolutely wrong agency to head the IID program has left it less than effective.


The IID program has had some limited success but, compared to other states, ours is greatly deficient.


Rachel O’Connor has been the Governor’s DWI Czar. Recently, in an  Abq. Journal interview she stated “…..look at other states on the driving drugged issue.” 


MVD  has an ignition interlock compliance program and they have reviewed similar programs in other states.


Other states have told us that DMV/MVD should be the enforcement arm of the program. The most successful states have also emphasized that the RFP process has been the best approach to raise the technology and service bar to the highest possible level.


TSB controls and influences the IID providers ONLY.


Not one fraction of a bit of influence or control over the offenders is possible through TSB.


        TSB has developed over 7,500 words of regulation and rules aimed primarily at the service providers, NOT the offenders.


          We don’t believe that controlling the interlock service providers was the intent of the IID program. We do believe that the intent was to control the DWI offenders. TSB has done an exemplary job of controlling the service providers. There is a lot of work to be done to fulfill the original and primary intent of the program and we believe that MVD is the department to do it.


MVD is ubiquitously known, respected, efficient, and the great majority of the populace considers cooperation with MVD unavoidable. 


Following is the supporting material gathered over our ten years as an ignition interlock service provider in New Mexico. This material shows the problems which we believe would be greatly alleviated if the legislative changes we propose would be implemented.


Fortunately, MVD’s research in other states supports this. 





          Overall, the ignition interlock program (IID program) is perceived as having no teeth.


          Offenders are pointed to the interlock program by the courts or MVD.


          TSB’s direction is that the offenders be given a list of TSB approved service providers from which the offenders are to select a provider.


          This is the offenders’ “moment of power”. This is where TSB’s policy of allowing every interlock manufacturer on the planet to do business in this state begins to destroy any positive effects of the program. This is when the offender takes charge. This is where TSB serves the criminal, NOT the people of the state.


          From this condition springs the interlock flea-market atmosphere wherein the offender, (now the consumer), is king.


          Now, the offenders begin to play the games and TSB is powerless to stop it because TSB has zero influence over driving privileges…….and the offenders KNOW it.


          There would be no need to compensate for, to correct, or to rectify, the resulting negatives if New Mexico just followed the winning example of states which don’t have this problem…where RFP is used. If there is only one (or, at the most 2) service providers, the offenders cannot play games.


          Let us now look at the “games” that the TSB flea-market fosters. 


          The first thing offenders do is “shop” for their provider. They behave like consumers but they are not “consumers” they are criminals.


The interlock providers are in competition for their “business”. The offenders have spent their lives learning that the consumer is king and they proceed with that attitude.


This degenerates the interlock providers to the position of flea-market vendors. Imagine if the police or probation officers had to operate under these conditions.


          As a result of the TSB “free-for-all”, the DWI’s drive the prices down as in any normal consumer-retailer situation. This is far from a consumer-retailer situation but TSB’s approach has perverted it into just that. Keep in mind that TSB cannot regulate or set prices but, an RFP would allow it.


          The result has driven the providers to install the devices for nothing….free installation. The next paragraph describes how a DWI offender can cheat all the service providers into GIVING him his interlock free for the full term.


          The free installation results in the game of “provider round-robin” in which all providers get duped. The offender get’s installed free, he refuses to pay for his first (and sometimes second) month. The provider is forced to remove the device or lose even more money. The offender picks-up his TSB provided list of providers, arm-twist another provider into installing the device for free and continues his game until he has had his device for almost his entire term at the expense of the providers.

          You might be able to imagine some counter-measures to this but, having done this for over ten years, I can assure you that none of them work. RFP/MVD would cure this very quickly.

          This is just one example of why the program, in its present form is considered a farce by so many offenders.


          Besides fostering disrespect for the program as described above, the price erosion fostered by the TSB free-for-all plan forces providers to cut costs in every way possible in order to out-price the mass of competitors thrown into the arena by TSB. Among the cost-cutting measures are, having the cheapest facilities, lowest-cost buildings in the lowest-cost areas, spending as little as possible on equipment, giving the minimum of service possible, saving time with less effort devoted to record-keeping and reporting, speeding-up supervision. Cutting these corners, ( and many others), allows the provider to better compete. Bad service and low quality is rewarded.



The cost-cutting spills over into not investing in R & D or improving technology in any way. There will be no return on the investment because TSB will do everything to prevent your investment from eliminating any competitors. TSB WANTS all manufacturers in the market.


          There is no need for an organization like TSB to waste time, money, and resources trying to prevent the above from occurring when the traditional RFP process is implemented.


          The TSB free-for-all creates a medium for corruption.


          Here is how the criminal can obtain a driver’s license AND avoid driving with an interlock.


A provider will install your device, give you a lease agreement form with which to get your ignition interlock license. The offender comes back to the provider who then removes the device and the offender drives on as usual without an interlock. HE can save himself as much as $500. The provider makes a lot of money, the offender is happy to take his chances without an interlock.


Pay cash for not reporting a violation.


Capture a client by surreptitiously suggesting that no reporting will be done.


Altering download records for a fee.


          The degree of cheating on and through the indigent program is even greater. The present program allows for cheating in many more areas and we would be happy to explain it all to you on your request.                


          Perhaps the worst outcome of allowing the criminals to pound the price into the dirt is that new technology cannot be introduced.


One company has invested millions in camera-equipped interlock technology. The only way this company can get a return on their R&D and development costs is to be given the well earned edge that they would get in a non-perverted market situation. So the people of the state will not benefit from the extra protection they would get from such technology. TSB’s  philosophy of artificially keeping ALL manufacturers in business here at all costs keeps everything at the lowest common denominator. There is no reward for better quality, better technology, superior service to the state; only for doing the criminal’s bidding at the lowest price.


Judges often complain that children are taught by their drunk-driving parents how to blow into the interlock when the parent is drunk. Of course, the result is horrible and the children are endangered.

Judges agree that the camera-equipped interlock would go a very long way into preventing this. Under RFP, the superior technology company could be attracted and a serious loophole in the interlock enforcement would be resolved. Chief Judge Nakamura of Metro Court is a fine one to speak to on this.


          Prices can be controlled by the state under RFP all the while delivering the best of technology, quality, and performance to the people. It is the exact opposite under the present free-for-all bloodbath which exists. RFP would eliminate this problem.


Another unpleasant result of the disrespect for the IID program is that offenders steal interlocks with impunity.


          Offenders simply disappear without communication. We lose a fortune. The present TSB program gives offenders the message that the law is unenforced and deserves little or no respect. MVD could put a stop to this.


          Offenders casually decide to no show up for appointments. RFP would eliminate this problem


          Offenders freely abandon their provider for another when dissatisfied with “stringent reporting” or if the provider does not act leniently when the offender violates. RFP would eliminate this problem.


          DWI’s are given an IID driver’s lic. when they present a lease agreement to MVD. This is a lease agreement between the offender and any of the army of interlock service providers. MVD does not physically inspect the vehicles for the presence of a working device and there is a black-market for lease agreement forms so that criminals can easily obtain their license WITHOUT  actually getting an interlock. This is just one more of a great many loopholes which are created or exacerbated by TSB’s deeply flawed  “small army of competing providers” philosophy.



          Judges are completely stumped whenever a DWI states, “I don’t have a car” or “I am giving-up driving”, so, you can’t make me get an interlock. The judges are pretty well forced to let the DWI walk. We know, of course, that the offenders simply walk out of the courtroom and continue their drinking and driving. The best the judges have been able to do is try to intimidate the DWI’s by making them sign an affidavit promising not to drive. The threat is supposed to be that the affidavit will “grease the skids” to faster and more serious legal consequences if they get caught….as though the drunk drivers ever worry about that !

Other states have solved much of this problem. Their MVD flags records and watch (through automation) for ANY transactions from this DWI (in state and out). We need an RFP to facilitate this because it requires very strict, tight, highly standardized, well connected data communication between MVD and the service provider. Doing it with MANY providers is practically impossible and ridiculously expensive where possible. It is destructive and unnecessary.


          Courts can’t keep up.


Metro Court is by far the best staffed, most dedicated probation department in the state but even they are not capable of keeping up with the task the way RFP/MVD states do.


Between probation and Drug/DWI Court, Metro must have over 40 officers dedicated to DWI. They only have Bernalillo County to concern themselves with. Florida has just short of 20 (twenty) million licensed drivers and because of their RFP and highly automated coordination between the provider and DMV, they have less than a dozen persons administering the whole program…….extremely effectively I might add.


We face discrepancies in funding, dedication to the interlock law, staffing,opinions about the interlock program, attitudes toward the provider/providers. The changes we propose would improve all of these problems.


Rachel O’Connor is right; “let’s look at other states…”


          Research by New Mexico’s MVD shows that over half of the convicted DWI’s who, by law, should be on interlock are not. If MVD were more tightly connected to the program, (in charge), and as automated as other states, this problem would be greatly alleviated.


          It seems that TSB is bent on having “An interlock service provider on every corner”. Once this happens, the interlock program becomes the “Tijuana Cop” program…corrupt and self-destructive.


This would kill all likelihood that a provider could afford to deliver:

A safe, clean, suitable location.

          Tech and installers paid well enough to provide proper and qualified service.

          Funds to support R&D or any improvements in any aspect of the service. (Data exchange and support, communications with authorities, maintained hardware and software).

          Sustained and predictable continuity of service.


The interlock service provider is a direct extension of the implementation of the law…much like the police. The IID provider executes the decisions of the courts and MVD by installing the interlock in the offender’s vehicle and is then asked to supervise the offender for the rest of the term.


Fortunately, the ignition interlock program can be brought to a quality level comparable to that found in other states. Those states have committed to our MVD to assit in any way they can.


The bulk of the improvements could be made at very little cost to the state and they would preclude very costly future problems which are sure to come up if we stay on the destructive path we are on now.


The solution is relatively simple and the cost very low. 







We here advocate for…..


           The use of camera-equipped ignition interlock devices. 


          The ignition interlock program to be enforced by MVD in New Mexico.


          Ignition interlock service provision to be performed by no more than 2 (two) companies.


          The service provision contract to be awarded through the traditional RFP process.


          We ask that the above be addenda or amendments to SB501, 46th Legislature, First Session, 2003. Senators Kent Cravens, Phil A. Griego.


            As constituent advocates, we express that the above changes to SB501 would bring about exceptionally positive and much needed improvements to the ignition interlock program in New Mexico.


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