According to Russell Sydney, the Coordinator for the medium Speed Electric Vehicle Coalition reports that three more states in the United States have passed laws that permit the operation of electric vehicles at speeds above the current federal LSEV regulation known as FMVSS 500, which is limited to 25 mph. The following is a synopsis of those regulations as passed by the legislatures of Minnesota, Oklahoma, and Tennessee.
HOUSE BILL 3800 DATE-INTRO: MARCH 4, 2008
LAST-ACTION: MAY 23, 2008; Filed with Secretary of State. Chapter No. 350
Medium Speed Electric Vehicles
SYNOPSIS: Modifies the definition of passenger automobile to include medium-speed electric vehicles, which makes it subject to the same registration taxes and license plate provisions as other passenger motor vehicles. The section also amends the definition of "passenger vehicle" for vehicle registration purposes, so that a pickup truck or van with a gross vehicle weight rating of 9,000-13,000 pounds is not taxed as a passenger vehicle if it is used in furtherance of a commercial enterprise and is not regulated as a commercial vehicle. The "passenger vehicle" definition change is effective for vehicles with a registration period beginning after March 1, 2011
HOUSE BILL 2695
DATE-INTRO: JANUARY 17, 2008
LAST-ACTION: June 2, 2008; Signed by Governor.
Medium Speed Vehicle
SYNOPSIS: [various unrelated provisions] … relates to the State Vehicle License and Registration Act; defines low speed vehicle and defines a medium speed electric vehicle as a self propelled, electronically powered four wheel vehicle;
SENATE BILL 1384
DATE-INTRO: JANUARY 9, 2008
LAST-ACTION: June 2, 2008; Signed by Governor
Medium Speed Vehicles
SYNOPSIS: Defines a medium-speed electrical vehicle as any self-propelled, electrically powered four-wheeled motor vehicle, equipped with a roll cage or crush-proof body design, whose speed attainable in one (1) mile is more than thirty (30) miles per hour but not greater than thirty-five (35) miles per hour; Requires medium-speed electrical vehicles to be registered pursuant to the provisions of the Oklahoma Vehicle License and Registration Act. The Oklahoma Tax Commission shall promulgate rules for the titling and registration of medium-speed electric vehicles.
Provides that medium-speed electrical vehicles which have been titled and registered pursuant to the provisions of the Oklahoma Vehicle License and Registration Act may be operated on the roadways of this state with a posted speed limit of forty-five (45) miles per hour or less; provided, however, medium-speed electrical vehicles shall not be permitted to travel upon any highway in this state which is a part of the National System of Interstate and Defense Highways and which otherwise meets or exceeds the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration regulations set forth in 49 C.F.R. 571.500. Operators of medium-speed electrical vehicles shall comply with all traffic regulations and rules of conduct for the operation of motor vehicles on the roadways of this state provided by law.
SENATE BILL 2857
DATE-INTRO: JANUARY 16, 2008
LAST-ACTION: MAY 19, 2008; Signed by GOVERNOR. MAY 22, 2008; Public Chaptered. Chapter No. 959
Medium Speed Vehicles
SYNOPSIS: Allows a medium speed vehicle to be operated at a rate not to exceed 35 miles per hour only on streets where the posted speed limit is 40 miles per hour or less. Defines a "medium speed vehicle" as any four-wheeled electric vehicle, excluding golf carts, whose top speed is greater than 30 miles per hour but not more than 35 miles per hour and that otherwise meets or exceeds the federal safety standards. The bill would not prohibit a medium speed vehicle from crossing a road or street at an intersection where the road or street has a posted speed limit of more than 40 miles per hour. Any person operating a medium speed vehicle must have in possession a valid Class D driver license
These states join Washington state and Montana, which passed similar legislation in 2007.
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