Macomb Local News
The Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety's 2018 report on safe driving laws suggests the usual things: Mandatory helmet laws, a new booster seat law, and a number of changes to the state's graduated drivers license program. 
 
The Advocates' Director of State Programs Tara Gill said the idea is to push states toward "optimal" laws. 
 
"We recommend the laws that we do, and the version of the law ... because they are shown to do the best job," Gill said.
 
But a lot of folks in Illinois think the laws currently on the books are just fine. 
 
Henry Haupt with the Secretary of State's office said that Illinois' graduated license program, which eases teenaged drivers into their first year behind the wheel, is more than fine.
 
"The most recent statistic that we received from the Illinois Department of Transportation showed that teen driving deaths are down 51 percent," Haupt said. "The program is working. The proof is in the pudding."
 
The Advocates recommend four changes to the state's graduated drivers license program, including more limits on nighttime driving, more limits on passengers for young drivers, a longer wait to get a permit, and not giving young drivers a full license until they're 18 years old.
 
Haupt says some the Advocate's recommendations are a bit broad and don't take into acccount what lawmakers want. 
 
Then there are the worries about what drivers want. 
 
The Advocates are, once again, asking for a mandatory motorcycle helmet law. 
 
Josh Witkowski, the legislative director for the motorcycle advocate group ABATE, said they have been pushing back on one-size-fits-all laws for three decades. 
 
Witkowski said they're seeing more success by focusing on educating drivers and riders to be aware when they are on the streets. 
 
"There are some traffic safety professionals that are starting to look at the impact of education and technology," Witkowski said. "And those innovations are more important than having the same tired conversation that we have had now for 31 years this year."
 
The Advocates' report grades states as well, Illinois is in the middle of the pack, which is better than some of our neighbors.