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Zeeland state rep. wants to change how communities set speed limits in Michigan

Posted at 5:56 AM, Sep 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-15 05:56:07-04

One Michigan lawmaker wants to see a change in the way communities set speed limits, allowing them to choose a lower option.

Right now, there is a law on the books that sets speeds base on the 85th percentile of the average driver’s speed in the area. From there, communities around to the nearest 85th, forcing some communities to round up.

“If it comes in at 37.6 miles per hour, so more than halfway between those two, the 35 and 40, you have to round up to 40 miles an hour, you have to there is no choice,” said Rep. Bradley Slagh, R-Zeeland.

Slagh is the bill’s sponsor. He says the way the law is written now is forcing communities to round up,

There is another change to how speeds are set in this house bill, allowing for an engineer to demonstrate there is a special need for a lower speed limit.

Something Slagh spoke about when introducing the bill to the Michigan House of Representatives Transportation Committee.

“Any example would be maybe there is a park, maybe there is a school, maybe there is a church something that should impact the speed limit more than just the 85th percentile,” said Slagh.

Slagh says they are reworking the first draft of the bill and then it will be presented for a second time to the transportation committee.