Speed Limit Validation Bill Passes

by Desk Editor on Tuesday, July 21, 2015 — 7:44 PM

A bill retrospectively validating speed limits set by local councils has passed through all stages this evening.

The bill was supported by all parties though many MPs spoke about their unhappiness about passing retrospective legislation. Others also grumbled about how it could have taken so long to find such mistakes existed.

Transport Minister Simon Bridges said theLand Transport (Speed Limits Validation and Other Matters) Bill would validates speed limits local bodies set through by-laws. They were always meant to have these powers and it was thought they had been set validly under past legislation.

Recent information suggested some road controlling authorities may have made speed limit bylaws under powers that may not have been available to them, or omitted to comply fully with their bylaw-making powers. The Bill validates all speed limit bylaws and confirms they were made correctly under land transport legislation.

MPs said the Kapiti District Council had raised the possibility their speed limits may be invalid and many others may be in the same boat. The main issue was whether reviews of the limits and their associated by-laws had been reviewed within their statutory timeframes.

Mr Bridges said it may be possible the speed limits were valid, but the Government was not willing to take the risk given the potential size of the problem. This would include potentially tens of thousands of speeding tickets being invalid.

The bill completed its first reading on a voice vote and the second reading was completed after one short debate. The committee stage was completed just before the 6pm dinner break and reported without amendment.

The third reading debate was completed on voice vote at 7.42pm

MPs then began the 11 hour set piece debate on the committee stage of the Appropriation (2015/16 Estimates) Bill

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