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Quinn Vetoes Speed Limit Bill

Posted on in Car Accidents

car accidents, Crystal Lake traffic law attorney, increase speed limit, speed limit bill, traffic violation, Illinois speed limit, driver safety, traffic accidents, McHenry County Traffic AttorneyGovernor Quinn recently vetoed a Senate bill that would have allowed the Tollway Authority and the Illinois Department of Transportation to increase the speed limit in urban areas. This bill is being viewed as a companion to one that was passed in 2013, which increased the speed limits on rural highways to 70 miles per hour. This bill would have the same effect on highways passing through urban areas, like the city of Chicago.

Although the bill made it through both houses of the legislature, the Governor opted to veto it based on studies that show a correlation between increasing the speed limit and increased danger to drivers. The bill's sponsors are now working to build enough support in Springfield to override the Governor's veto, citing overwhelming public support for the bill and other competing traffic studies.

Why the Bill was Vetoed

Governor Quinn chose to veto the bill after carefully examining research on the issue of speed and traffic safety and concluding that higher speeds are the leading cause of traffic accidents. This move should not come as a surprise given the Quinn administration's response to the previous highway speed limit bill. Many people viewed that bill as empowering his administration to raise the speed limits across all the highways in the state, but the Tollway Authority and the Illinois Department of Transportation interpreted the law much more narrowly, and only raised speed limits on highways in rural areas.

Overriding the Veto

The bill's sponsors see the issue differently. They cite studies that show that the major cause of accidents is not high speed, but rather speed variance, a driver driving significantly faster or slower than the surrounding traffic. This can lead to an increased number of lane changes, and it promotes cars weaving through traffic, which can often cause an accident. Additionally, the sponsors pointed to polling data showing that 75 percent of Illinois citizens favored an increase in urban speed limits.

Based on these competing studies and the high amount of public support, the sponsors are now working to override Governor Quinn's veto. To do that, they need a three-fifths majority vote in both houses. The law initially passed in the Senate by a vote of 48 to six and in the House by a vote of 111 to four. Since both of those votes would be sufficient to override a veto, the goal of passing the legislation over the governor's objection seems to be a real possibility.

If you have recently been cited for speeding or some other traffic violation, seek the assistance of an experienced Crystal Lake traffic law attorney today. Our firm's skilled team of attorneys will aggressively defend your rights in court, and see to it that you are fully and fairly represented.

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