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Oregon Senate passes speed limit reduction bill

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011
vigilante neighborhood speed enforcement
New law would make it easier for
cities to lower speed limits
on residential streets.
(Photo © J. Maus)

House Bill 3150 took a very big step toward becoming reality today. The bill, which would give cities the authority to lower the speed limit on residential streets by five miles per hour (from 25 to 20 mph in most cases), passed a vote on the Senate floor by 26-3.

HB 3150 passed the House by a wide margin back in March and has been working its way through the Senate committee process ever since.
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Salem Watch: Residential speed limit bill passes House 45-14

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011

HB 3150, a bill that would give every city in Oregon the authority to reduce speed limits on "neighborhood greenways" to 20 mph, just passed the Oregon House by a vote of 45-14.

The bill came out of committee last week with a few no votes from lawmakers who said they were concerned about the wording of the bill. Rep. Shawn Lindsay (R-Hillsboro) said he wanted "neighborhood greenway" changed to "neighborhood byway" (to avoid "greenwashing" a public safety bill). Lindsay said he voted no after House committee chairs decided to move forward with a vote without the "byway" amendment.
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Neighborhood speed limit bill passes House committee 5-3

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011
Rep. Lindsay (R-Hillsboro) voted no
on a bill that would reduce speed
limits on residential streets.

HB 3150 passed out of committee yesterday, but not without some drama. The bill, which would give cities the authority to reduce speed limits on certain "neighborhood greenway" streets to 20 mph, survived the House Transportation and Economic Development Committee by a vote of 5 to 3 yesterday.

The eight member committee is split evenly between Republicans and Democrats and the three representatives that voted against the bill were Republicans (committee co-chair, Cliff Bentz (R-Ontario) voted yes). According to freshman Rep. Shawn Lindsay (R-Hillsboro), the reason for their no votes had to do with a procedural issue centered around the terminology used in the bill. (more...)

PBOT Director testifies in support of 20 mph speed limit bill

Monday, February 28th, 2011

"There is something magic about 20 mph... We can substantially reduce the likelihood of fatalities in our streets by having this important piece of legislation in place."
— Tom Miller, PBOT Director

House Bill 3150 (PDF), which would give municipalities across Oregon the authority to reduce speeds on some residential streets to 20 mph, was the subject of a public hearing last Friday. The bill is a companion* to Senate Bill 344 and the City of Portland Bureau of Transportation has made it one of their top legislative priorities for the 2011 session.

[*HB 3150 differs slightly from SB 344 in that it not only addresses the speed limit issue, but it also seeks to official define the term "neighborhood greenways" in Oregon law.]
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Salem Watch: Speed limit bill scaled down to focus solely on residential streets

Friday, February 18th, 2011

Earlier today we reported on a hearing scheduled for a new bill that would give Oregon cities the authority to set lower speed limits on state highways all types of roadways. Now, according to the bill's sponsor, Rep. Ben Cannon (D-Portland), the bill has been scaled back to only focus on residential streets.

In its original form, House Bill 3150 would have given cities with a population of 100,000 or more the authority to set speed limits on all roads — including state highway arterials — under certain conditions. The language of that bill will now be completely changed in order for it to be the House companion bill to Senate Bill 344. SB 344 is the City of Portland-backed bill that seeks to give cities the authority to set lower speed limits on certain residential streets, a.k.a. neighborhood greenways.
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Salem Watch: Highway speed limit bill slated for public hearing - UPDATED

Friday, February 18th, 2011
SE Powell.
(Photo © J. Maus)

UPDATE: This bill no longer exists in the form reported below. I've heard from Rep. Cannon's office that HB 3150 will get the "gut and stuff" treatment; which means the language will be significantly altered. The new plan is to make HB 3150 a companion bill to Senate Bill 344, the bill PBOT is pushing for to get authority to lower speed limits on residential streets. I'll post clean update in separate post in a few minutes.


HB 3150, the bill that would give cities with a minimum population of 100,000 the authority to designate speed limits on state highways, is slated for a public hearing on February 25th.

This bill is being watched closely by traffic safety advocates because high-speed, state-managed highways and arterials are where the vast majority of serious injury and fatal crashes take place. Unfortunately, many neighborhoods throughout Oregon held hostage by these large streets and local jurisdictions have few tools to deal with them because the streets are owned and managed by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT). (more...)

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