HOUSE COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION

 

 

March 09, 2005   Hearing Room C

6:30 P.M.  Tapes 23 - 24

Corrected 10/17/05

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:            Rep. George Gilman, Chair

Rep. Terry Beyer, Vice-Chair

Rep. Chuck Burley, Vice-Chair

Rep. Deborah Boone

Rep. Scott Bruun

Rep. Dave Hunt

 

MEMBER EXCUSED:            Rep. Kim Thatcher

 

MEMBER VISITING:                  Rep. Vicki Berger

 

STAFF PRESENT:                  John Houser, Committee Administrator

Mike Reiley, Committee Assistant

 

MEASURES/ISSUES HEARD:

                                                HB 2365 – Public Hearing

                                                HB 2481 – Public Hearing

                                                HB 2840 – Public Hearing

 

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 23, A

003

Chair Gilman

Calls the meeting to order at 6:29 p.m. Opens a public hearing on HB 2365, HB 2481 & HB 2840.

HB 2365, 2481 & 2840 – PUBLIC HEARING

008

John Houser

Committee Administrator. Introduces HB 2365, HB 2481 and HB 2840.

027

Rep. Dennis Richardson

House District 4. Submits and summarizes prepared testimony in support of HB 2840 (EXHIBIT A). Explains that HB 2840 would enact a 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. 7 days a week (“7-7-7”) school speed zone.

080

Rep. Berger

Asks if the authority exists for Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) to put up flashing lights.

095

Troy Costales

Manager, Transportation Safety Division, ODOT. Explains that there are two school zones: adjacent roads to schools and non-adjacent roads to schools. Notes that HB 2840 does not change non-adjacent road speeds.

114

Rep. Berger

Explains that her intent is to re-establish the previous school speed zones.

124

Rep. Arnie Roblan

House District 9. Explains support for the changes set forth in HB 2365 and the opposition toward the all day, every day twenty-mile-per-hour zone.

181

Rep. Hunt

Asks what the school zone hours should be.

191

Rep. Roblan

Explains that some elementary schools become parks and are used by children at different hours and on weekends.  Notes that high schools have events that go to 10 p.m. on many nights of the week and weekends.

232

Norman West

Submits and reads prepared testimony regarding HB 2365, 2481, 2840 (EXHIBIT B).

331

Chair Gilman

Explains that the reason for passing the legislation in 2003 was that 100 children were injured and one or two per year were killed in and around school zones. States that returning to the language “when children are present” is too vague.

352

West

Explains that many school properties are fenced and set back from the roads.

385

Rep. Berger

Explains an incident cited by Mr. West in which a child was killed by a vehicle side mirror while waiting for a bus.

403

Wally Gutzler

Salem. Explains that he wants to see the law changed. Notes that before the law went into effect on July 1, 2004, there was more police enforcement around school zones.

TAPE 24, A

027

Hank Slangal

McMinnville. Submits and reads prepared testimony in support of changing the school speed zone laws (EXHIBIT C). Explains his home is on a street that sees more than 10,000 vehicles per day.

071

Rep. Hunt

Asks what hours children are present and what hours would be appropriate for establishing a school zone speed limit.

076

Slangal

Answers that he sees more children in the middle of the day on Sunday.

081

Rep. Beyer

Explains that police in Springfield use their discretion and enforce more vigilantly when children are present.

093

Slangal

Notes that there is little enforcement day or night.

101

Floyd Oster

Albany. Submits and reads prepared testimony in favor of changing school zone speeds (EXHIBIT D).

159

Frank Lane

Testifies in support of changing the school zone speed law. Testifies that the school zone should be a protection area for children. 

195

Rep. Burley

Explains the ambiguities in the law that makes the law confusing and ineffective.

223

Lane

Explains that he has never had difficulty determining when children are present.

231

Carl Gunter

Explains the ambiguities of the law and difficulties that arise from the problems.

273

Chair Gilman

Discusses the testimony regarding safety from the committee hearing on Monday, March 7, 2005.

287

Rep. Berger

Notes that flashing traffic lights are helpful, but they are expensive.

309

Gunter

Asks about changing the color of signs to designate school zones.

332

Jennifer Shuyler

Corvallis. Submits and reads prepared testimony in support of changing the school zone laws (EXHIBIT E). Comments about an incident in which she was cited in a school zone when children were not present.

399

Chair Gilman

States that the intent is to change the law.

414

Gunter

Asks about the costs associated with installing a flashing light.

430

Chair Gilman

Responds he does not know specifics on the cost of signs.

452

Oster

Submits and reads a passage from the Oregon Driver’s Manual (EXHIBIT F).

TAPE 23, B

018

Rep. Beyer

Notes the previous testimony concerning children darting out between cars and “when children are present” may not address the problem.

030

Phil Anderson

Salem. Testifies that he drives through many school zones every day and that the current law is “overkill.” Notes that traffic speed is generally slowed by traffic congestion. Points out the children are mostly under supervision and within fenced areas. Highlights the problem of confusion regarding “when children are present.”

101

Karen Jones

Testifies in favor of the “7-7-7” idea proposed by Rep. Richardson, but would prefer to see it as “7-5-5”.

121

Rep. Berger

Asks if school zone time restraints should be in effect during the summer.

123

Jones

Answers no. Argues that it should only be in effect when school is in session.

130

Anderson

Asks if the city controls the flashing lights.

133

Rep. Berger

Answers yes.

134

Anderson

Testifies that school zone lights flash on weekends and holidays. Stresses the importance of consistency in laws.

156

Jessica Miller

Notes that many people do not know the school calendar year and dates of school holidays.

169

Rep. Berger

Describes the forty emails and letters she has received related to school zones.

181

Slangal

Notes that to travel ¼ mile at 30 miles per hour takes 30 seconds and to travel ¼ miles at 20 miles per hour takes 15 seconds more.

189

Gunter

Discusses the importance of lights flashing at school zones for safety.

201

Chair Gilman

Closes the public hearing on HB 2365, HB 2481 and HB 2840. Adjourns the meeting at 7:38 p.m.

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

  1. HB 2840, prepared testimony of Dennis Richardson, 1p
  2. HB 2365, 2481, 2840, written testimony of Norman West, 1p
  3. HB 2365, 2481, 2840, written testimony of Hank Slangal, 2pp
  4. HB 2365, 2481, 2840, written testimony of Floyd Oster, 1p
  5. HB 2365, written testimony of Jennifer Shuyler, 1p
  6. HB 2365, 2481, 2840, Oregon’s Driver Manual pgs. 74-75, Floyd Oster, 1p