A bill passed Monday by the state Senate would make it illegal in Arizona to text while driving.
The Senate's 19-10 vote on the bill sends it to the House.
Proponents say the bill would help curb an obvious threat to highway safety while opponents say motorists distracted by texting can and should be ticketed for reckless driving.
The bill would make texting while driving a civil traffic violation punishable by a $50 fine. The fine would rise to $200 if the violator is involved in an accident.
A similar bill failed to emerge from the Senate last year. This year's bill is supported by cell phone and insurance companies, as well as hospital, police and firefighter groups.
At least 20 other states have enacted bans on texting while driving.
© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.