Legislators introduce bill to raise highway speed limit

For most states 70 is the new 65. We're not talking about age, but rather the speed limit.

Wednesday, the authors of a new bill held a press conference in Madison to outline how Wisconsin is all by itself in the Midwest as a state with highway speed limits below 70 miles per hour.

A trip from Milwaukee to Madison would take you about one hour and 14 minutes if you did 65 miles per hour the whole way. If you were able to do 70, you could shave six minutes off that drive. \"Both representative Tittl and I feel this actually, will provide better safety because it will bring speeds closer to each other.\" said Senator Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg).

He wants you to be able to drive faster, that's why he's co-sponsoring a bill with Representative Paul Tittl (R-Manitowoc) that would let you drive five miles per hour faster on some highways. \"This bill is so simple it basically takes the sixty-five, exes it out, and puts 70.\" Tittl said.

This is Tittl's second attempt at a bill like this. Last session it passed the Assembly, but was held up by the Senate. \"Some of the people were a little concerned about going 70 miles per hour.\" explained Senator Jerry Petrowski (R-Marathon).

Petrowski chairs the Senate's transportation committee, that's where the bill stalled out last session, and he says this version of the bill has a better chance of passing the senate. \"The bill being much simpler, I think that's also positive.\" Petrowski said.

Wednesday, Senate Democrats said they see this as a distraction to real issues in the state.\"It's not one that we said how do we create more jobs, it's by going 70 miles per hour in this state. That's not what we're looking at.\" said Senate Minority Leader Jennifer Shilling (D-La Crosse).

If this bill does become law, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation will decide which highways will be changed to 70 miles per hour.

As far as cost, Illinois recently made this change and it took about $200,000 to change out 900 speed limit signs according to its department of transportation.

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