HOUSE COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION

 

 

March 3, 2003 Hearing Room 357

8:30 AM Tapes  37 - 40

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:            Rep. Alan Brown, Chair

Rep. Elizabeth Beyer, Vice-Chair

Rep. John Mabrey Vice-Chair

Rep. Jackie Dingfelder

Rep. George Gilman

Rep. Mitch Greenlick

Rep. Cliff Zauner

 

STAFF PRESENT:                  Janet Adkins, Administrator

Ryan Sherlock, Assistant

 

 

MEASURE/ISSUES HEARD:            HB 2514 – PUBLIC HEARING

                                                HB 2518 – PUBLIC HEARING

                                                HB 2501 – PUBLIC HEARING

                                                LC 3392 – WORK SESSION

 

 

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

 

TAPE/#

Speaker

Comments

Tape 37, A

003

Chair Brown

Calls meeting to order at 8:35 a.m., and opens a public hearing on HB 2514.

HB 2514 – PUBLIC HEARING

005

Janet Adkins

Committee Administrator. Offers a description of HB 2514.

010

Chair Brown

Opens a public hearing on HB 2518.

HB 2514, HB 2518 – PUBLIC HEARING

015

Rep. Kruse

State Representative, District 7. Offers a brief history of HB 2514 & HB 2518, and testimony in support of HB 2514 & HB 2518. Offers proposed amendment to HB 2514 (EXHIBIT A).

100

Rep. Zauner

Refers to a bill from last session which was eventually vetoed for its lack of consideration regarding speed differential between cars and trucks.

105

Rep. Kruse

Recalls that there are several bills this session which may have or could have that provision.

110

Rep. Greenlick

Asks why emergency vehicles were excluded from the bill.

115

Rep. Kruse

Explains the purpose of excluding emergency vehicles from the bill.

120

Rep. Greenlick

Asks if the exclusion is still in the bill after the amendments.

125

Rep. Kruse

Recalls that the exclusion is still in the bill.

140

Kelly Skye

Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Legislative Director. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT B) in opposition of HB 2514. Indicates that some of her concerns may be addressed by the amendment proposed by Rep. Kruse.

200

Rep. Zauner

Clarifies that as currently written, if a motorist is driving thirty miles per hour over the speed limit, but under control, it is classed as reckless driving.

205

Skye

Addresses the link between high speed and reckless driving.

220

Rep. Zauner

Clarifies that there is an exemption when driving below the seventy mph speed limit.

225

Skye

Explains that the bill does not create a specific exemption.

235

Rep. Zauner

Asks whether passing the bill would decrease the number of jury trials.

240

Skye

Responds that she is unsure as to whether the bill would affect the number of jury trials. Comments on the affects of the bill on the trial process.

270

Janet Adkins

Refers to the proposed amendment, and asks Ms. Skye about specific language in the amendment.

280

Skye

Addresses the language in the bill and the possible changes proposed.

300

Jim Botwinis

Oregon State Police Officers’ Association, President. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT C) in opposition to HB 2514 as written. Indicates his group’s possible support for the proposed amendment to the bill.

365

Chair Brown

Closes the public hearing on HB 2514.

HB 2518 – PUBLIC HEARING

375

Dr. Frederick Hakkinen 

Meridian Park Hospital. Offers testimony in opposition to HB 2518, including his personal experience driving the Autobahn in Germany.

TAPE 38, A

020

Rep. Zauner

Comments on his personal experience driving the Autobahn, indicating speed differential was the primary safety concern.

030

Hakkinen

Explains that the Autobahn has recently been limited in speed, and further comments on the dangers of the Autobahn.

035

Rep. Zauner

Asks whether Mr. Hakkinen thinks there are more accidents now with a speed limit on the Autobahn.

040

Hakkinen

Explains that he thinks there are now fewer accidents.

045

Janet Adkins

Offers a description of HB 2518.

060

Bob Russell

Oregon Trucking Associations, President. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT D) regarding HB 2518.

090

Rep. Dingfelder

Asks what the fuel difference would be for trucks if the speed were increased ten miles per hour.

095

Russell

States that the increase is hard to measure and not substantial.

100

Rep. Beyer

Clarifies that currently there is a ten mph speed differential, and that Mr. Russell’s group has not tried to change the current differential.

105

Russell

Explains that due to the prohibitive cost of changing every speed limit sign posted in the state, his group has not pursued changing the current speed differential. However, if the signs were to be changed under HB 2518, his group supports fixing the speed differential problem.

115

Chair Brown

Thanks Mr. Russell for his testimony and opens a public hearing on HB 2501.

HB 2518, HB 2501 – PUBLIC HEARING

120

Rep. Randy Miller

House District 37. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT E) in support of HB 2501.

270

Senator Gary George

Senate District 12. Offers testimony in support of HB 2501.

355

Rep. Miller

Comments on the validity of statistics which may be presented in opposition to HB 2501.

385

Chair Brown

Clarifies that the speed differential between cars and trucks would be ten mph, and asks if it  would be reasonable to raise the truck speed to seventy mph, decreasing the speed differential to five mph.

395

Rep. Miller

Defers to the judgment of Oregon Department of Transportation.

TAPE 37, B

010

Sen. George

Comments that the relating clause could be amended to change the speed differential.

020

Chair Brown

Clarifies that the bill would only apply to the interstate system.

025

Rep. Miller

Explains that he will offer amendments which would apply the bill to other roadways in the state, but reiterates the continued use of the Basic Rule.

040

Rep. Mabrey

Asks for a clarification regarding the statistics of which states have which speed differentials.

055

Rep. Miller

Points out that ODOT would have control over those decisions.

065

Rep. Beyer

Asks if HB 2501 has similar language to bills proposed during previous sessions.

070

Rep. Miller

Explains that the language is consistent.

080

Rep. Beyer

Asks what Rep. Millers feelings would be if the speed was not increased when referred to the Oregon Department of Transportation.

085

Rep. Miller

Comments on what may happen if the authority to increase speed was given to Oregon Department of Transportation.

100

Sen. George

Comments on the modern safety of trucks and automobiles compared to the past.

130

Rep. Greenlick

Comments on the modern lack of common sense in modern drivers, and asks how that behavior would change with an increased speed limit.

150

Rep. Miller

Explains that he does not think the average speed would increase greatly due to higher speed limits.

180

Sen. George

Offers personal experience of driving in other states where the speed limit was greater than that of Oregon.

200

Rep. Dingfelder

Expresses her concerns regarding the ability of the State Police to enforce an increased speed limit, and questions the timing of this particular measure.

220

Rep. Miller

Explains that since HB 2501 just passes authority to the Oregon Department of Transportation, that would be an issue for that department to address.

260

Dr. John Tongue

Oregon Transportation Safety Committee, Chair. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT F) in opposition to HB 2501.

TAPE 38, B

005

Chair Brown

Asks about Mr. Tongue’s involvement on the Oregon Speed Zone Improvement Panel.

010

Tongue

Outlines the mandate of the Oregon Speed Zone Improvement Panel.

015

Rep. Greenlick

Refers to statistics presented by Dr. Tongue, and asks how he would think the behavior of motorists would change if the speed were increased.

017

Tongue

Remarks that he thinks the average speed would increase substantially.

040

Rep. Zauner

Clarifies that the bill only gives authority to increase speed to ODOT, and asks if Dr. Tongue is uneasy with ODOT authority.

045

Tongue

Points out that ODOT is opposed to the bill and the authority that would come with it, and that the majority of the people in the state are opposed to increasing speed in the state.

085

Dr. Frederick Hakkinen

Meridian Park Hospital. Comments on the durability of the Autobahn roadway in Germany, and the average speed of automobiles on I-5.

115

Chair Brown

Expresses his concerns for the costs of building the Autobahn, and comments on the history of I-5.

130

Adkins

Submits written testimony (EXHIBIT G) from the Oregon Environmental Council in opposition to HB 2501.

140

Troy Costales

Oregon Department of Transportation, Safety Division. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT H) regarding HB 2518.

210

Costales

Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT I) regarding HB 2501, including which roadways would be affected and which would not.

250

Chair Brown

Asks whether inferior equipment could account for some of the data indicating high accident statistics in the past.

255

Costales

Acknowledges that equipment improvements have lessoned the number of accidents, and points out the number of automobiles on the road has tripled since 1961 to today. Continues with presentation.

375

Rep. Beyer

Clarifies that Mr. Costales’ believes that Oregon Department of Transportation would be required to review all speed limits.

385

Costales

Explains that speed limit reviews would be done at the request of a citizen or local government.

395

Rep. Beyer

Asks whether the speed limit reviews would be conducted by the Speed Zone Review Panel, or the Oregon Department of Transportation.

400

Costales

Explains that the task would have to be designated to that group through rule.

TAPE 39, A

005

Rep. Zauner

Asks whether those respondents who oppose the increase in speed limit were asked how fast they drive.

010

Costales

Indicates that the question was not asked, but that there are speed monitoring devices in the pavement which indicate the average speed.

020

Rep. Zauner

Asks whether the respondents would be willing to pay the fines for speeding.

025

Chair Brown

Asks if Mr. Costales would support the change in speed differential from ten mph to five mph.

027

Costales

Discusses the increase in safety between speed differentials, but points out the impact on the infrastructure caused by the increased speed coupled with the large weight of trucks.

035

Gail Shibley

Oregon Department of Human Services. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT J) in opposition to HB 2501.

135

Rep. Zauner

Asks if the speed limits increased, yet the behavior and speed of the drivers remained the same, would the number and severity of accidents increase.

140

Shibley

Expresses concern for engaging in hypothetical questions, and reiterates concerns regarding the cost accidents have on the healthcare system.

145

Rep. Zauner

Refers to his personal experience and restates his question.

150

Shibley

Reiterates concerns based on healthcare costs.

155

Eugene Lubinsky

Portland, Oregon. Offers testimony in support of HB 2501.

360

Jeff Boly

National Motorists Association. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT K) in support of HB 2501.

TAPE 40, A

001

Boly

Continues with testimony in support of HB 2501.

120

Ken Ray

Clackamas, Oregon. Offers written testimony (EXHIBIT L) in support of HB 2501.

150

Chair Brown

Closes the public hearing on HB 2501, and opens a work session to consider committee bills: LC 3392 (EXHIBIT M).

LC 3392 – WORK SESSION

160

Chair Brown

MOTION:  Moves LC 3392 BE INTRODUCED as a committee bill.

 

 

VOTE:  5-0

EXCUSED:  2 - Dingfelder, Greenlick

 

Chair Brown

Hearing no objection, declares the motion CARRIED.

165

Chair Brown

Closes the work session to consider committee bills, and adjourns the meeting at 10:52 a.m.

The following exhibits are submitted for the record without public testimony:

 

Staff

Submits State Maximum Speed Limits for Passenger Vehicles (EXHIBIT N) regarding HB 2501.

Submits proposed statute repeal (EXHIBIT O) regarding HB 2501.

 

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

A – HB 2514, conceptual amendment, Rep. Kruse, 1 p.

B – HB 2514, written testimony, Kelly Skye, 1 p.

C – HB 2514, written testimony, Jim Botwinis, 1 p.

D – HB 2501, written testimony, Bob Russell, 1 p.

E – HB 2501, written testimony, Rep. Miller, 5 pp.

F – HB 2501, written testimony, John Tongue, 15 pp.

G – HB 2501, written testimony, Staff, 1p.

H – HB 2518, written testimony, Troy Costales, 2 pp.

I – HB 2501, written testimony, Troy Costales, 16 pp.

J – HB 2501, written testimony, Gail Shibley, 3 pp.

K – HB 2501, written testimony, Jeff Boly, 2 pp.

L – HB 2501, written testimony, Ken Ray, 4 pp.

M – LC 3392, committee measure, Staff, 2 p.

 

EXHIBITS RECEIVED OUTSIDE MEETING

 

N – HB 2501, State Maximum Speed Limits for Passenger Vehicles, Staff, 2 pp.

O – HB 2501, Repeal, Staff, 1 p.