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Council, Mayors, Activists All Support “Safe Streets” Legislation

9:19 AM PDT on May 5, 2009

We've been waiting for weeks for Paul Krekorian's "Safe Streets" legislation, A.B. 766, to make it to committee, but in the meantime the support for the legislation has grown.  While the city was raising speed limits on roads throughout the Valley, it complained that it was unable to resist the changes because of a state law that limits be set at the eighty-fifth percentile of drivers.  This legislation provides a greater role for the community in setting the limits and greater flexibility for LADOT to resist raising the limits.

Now, as the Krekorian legislation cruises to its hearing in front of the Assembly Transportation Committee next Monday, a chorus of voices has risen in support of the legislation that would give the LADOT greater flexibility when it comes to raising speed limits.  The City Council has backed the legislation.  So has the Mayor.  And yesterday, a coalition of activists and writers added their voices to the push to get this legislation passed.

Some of the writers referenced regularly on Streetsblog, Biking in LA, Brayj Against the Machine and SoapBox were all part of yesterday's series of blog articles written in support of Krekorian.  All of the writers provided an email address,, so that readers can write their own letters to be presented to the Assembly by Stephen Box during the hearing.  Ron Kaye even provides a sample letter.

While next week is an important step in protecting our streets, it's far from the last stop.  After clearing committee the legislation needs to be passed by the full Assembly before going through a similar process in the State Senate.  Even once this legislation becomes law, we'll still have to contend with the LADOT, which in the words of Assistant General Manager John Fisher would have wanted to raise limits on many of these roads anyway.

Regardless, it's important to back Krekorian now to show our support for communities and safe streets.  A.B. 766 allows an entry for Neighborhood Councils in setting speed limits.  With the deck now stacked against safe streets, and more speed limit raises being moved by the city's transportation commission and city council, a speed limit increase on Zelzah Avenue is on today's City Council Agenda, the time is now to stand up for safe streets.  Thanks to Ron Kaye and the Bike Writer's Collective, taking that stand is as easy as a couple of clicks.

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