My Suburban Life Editorial on New Social Hosting Law

LAKE COUNTY – A new Illinois state law imposes penalties for parents or guardians who provide alcohol to minors on private property including vehicles, boats, and motor homes, and private planes. 
The Lake County Sheriff’s Office intends to enforce the new laws on the county’s many lakes come boating season, according to Sgt. James McKinney of Lake County Sheriff’s Office’s Marine Unit. As of Jan. 1, there is a $2,500 fine and up to a year in jail for knowingly providing underage drinking to occur, McKinney said.
“If death results from providing alcohol to minors, the adult is subject to be charged with a felony,” McKinney said, adding that the law also includes provisions for social hosting and parties in which adults provide alcohol to minors.

Mike Nerheim, Lake County state’s attorney, said his office has “seen tragic examples of what underage drinking results in.” “We hope that this legislation will encourage parents and guardians to be more vigilant,” Nerheim said. “We also hope that this legislation will set a precedence to discourage parents in hosting social events that involve underage drinking in their homes.” McKinney said the new state laws are a result of local tragedies.

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