Car&Driver.com reports that some municipalities have kept their speed limits artificially low so as to make it easier for its officers to issue speeding tickets.
The article entitled “Feeding The Machine:Sandbagging On Speed Limits” explains that, under Michigan law, there are certain formulas for determining state limits. The formulas are based on average speeds traveled, and the number of intersections and driveways along the stretch of a given roadway. The article’s author George Hunter writes:
Since Congress repealed a national speed-limit law in 1995, states have been increasing limits. So, while state legislatures are voting to up speed limits, local municipalities are reluctant to follow, experts say, because they don’t want to lose the revenue that speeding tickets provide.
Motorists with speeding tickets issued in illegally low speed zones are able to get their tickets dismissed despite the fact that they were speeding. Of course, most motorists don’t know the law and end up paying these tickets.
It is despicable that these cities would ignore state law in order to generate “illegal” revenue. Motorists end up paying fines and blemishing their driving records where they otherwise would be driving at a safe speed.
In New York City, the maximum speed limit on highways is only 50 mph. This 5 mph differential from the standard 55 mph highway speed limit often “trips up” motorists who think they are driving within the limit. While signs are posted, it is particularly effective on motorists who don’t often drive in New York City. Unfortunately, New York’s Legislature has not imposed a law similar to that in Michigan.