Speed law care needed

Published 10:16 am Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A proposed transportation budget bill working its way through the Ohio legislature would allow for the increase of the speed limit on turnpikes and various portions of rural highways throughout Ohio by five miles per hour.

While there are some good things, it is more important to take a step back, ask the needed questions and gather the proper information before taking a vote for final approval.

This includes making use of complete data from sources like the Ohio State Highway Patrol and other entities that provide factual information and studies on speeds and accidents.

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For Lawrence County in particular, before increasing the speed limits; several of those same topics should be examined closely as safety concerns abound at the current limits and communicated by our local leaders.

The proposed bill to increase and the timeframe for decisions to be made simply don’t allow for the necessary data to be gathered from a period of time that is sufficient to make an informed decision by legislators. This is due, in part, to the fact that we are less than two years removed from speed limit increases in late 2013.

We do believe some good elements exist in this budget bill, like enhancing enforcement on those who drive in the left lane and not use it as a passing lane or exiting the roadway as it is intended. Additionally, another suitable element would be the acceptance of payment for various fees with electronic forms of payment like credit and debit cards.

The safety of motorists throughout the state needs to be the top priority, and with the information at hand, legislators need to take extra time and not speed through the process.