Lawmaker Says He Has Restored Driving License

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A first-term state representative who had been spotted driving on a suspended license in an unregistered car said he has obtained full restoration of his driving privileges.

Bert Johnson told the Detroit Free Press and The Detroit News that he paid penalties and a reinstatement fee Monday.

"It's been dealt with. I am 100 percent licensed," Johnson said.

Kelly Chesney, a spokeswoman for Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land, said Tuesday it appeared that Johnson had taken care of issues related to his driving privileges and again was licensed to drive.

Johnson, a Democrat from Highland Park, has had a suspended license for most of the time that he has been of driving age, according to secretary of state records reviewed by the Free Press and detailed in a story Sunday.

Johnson serves on the House Insurance Committee, which oversees the regulation of auto insurance. Johnson has had at least 18 violations, mostly for speeding, and at least 24 license suspensions, the Free Press said.

Johnson, 33, had said he was unaware that the registration on the 2001 Jaguar that he was driving had expired. He said the plate would be renewed.

Some Republicans had objected to Johnson's taking office because of a 1993 Oakland County armed robbery in which he pleaded no contest. A no contest plea is not an admission of guilt but is treated that way for sentencing purposes.

Johnson served eight months in prison, but backers said he since has rebuilt his life.

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