RED ALERT: FINAL vote on HB 2224 today (Thurs., April 20).
The senate bill has already passed. If we don't stop HB 2224, it will become law as of Sept. 1!
Call your Texas State Representative and tell them to vote 'No!' on HB 2224. Capital switchboard: (512) 463-4630. They can tell you who your state rep. is.
What does HB 2224 do?
HB 2224(Hernandez) -This bill would give cities unilateral power to lower speed limits on highways (not designated part of the state highway system) down to 20 MPH if they consider the posted speeds ‘unreasonable or unsafe.’ This language is too broad language, especially considering part two of this bill where it gives cities the authority to change speed limits on the fly without a traffic or engineering investigation to justify it.
These cities could use this language to turn almost any highway into a 20 MPH zone - effectively a school zone. This subsection applies to a two-lane, undivided highway or part of a highway. Highways should not be slowed to 20 MPH!
This is part of cities' push for California-style Vision Zerotraffic calming measures, which have the opposite effect of calming. These techniques intentionally slow down cars to make them miserable enough to switch to transit, walking or biking to get around. This is the stated goal of Vision Zero-style plans adopted by city officials in most Texas cities.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner admits,
"When the buses and the trains are going faster than the cars and the trucks, people will exit the cars and the trucks and use the buses and the trains.”
(SOURCE: ‘Houston to Unveil Vision Zero Plan for Zero Traffic Fatalities by 2030',The Texan, November 2020.)
"Vision Zero concepts have been adopted by the United Nations (UN) and are promoted under the organization’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and a special resolution to improve global road safety.
"The UN also urges member nations to increase use of public transportation, promote pedestrian walkways and bicycle lanes, establish 'safe speed limits' and implement 'speed restricting mechanisms.'"
(SOURCE: ‘Harris County Seeks to Achieve Zero Traffic Fatalities by 2030, Mirrors UN Plan',The Texan, August 2020.)
Austin’s Climate Action Plan states: “We created the plan through the lens of racial equity…” Under strategy #4: “Support locally initiated community events that are car-free and expand “Slow Streets” programs…” In its bicycle policy is states: “These local, neighborhood streets are naturally more attractive for all cyclists, and can be further improved for people through measures such as traffic calming…”
FHWA defines traffic calming as: “The primary purpose of traffic calming is to support the livability…of residential and commercial areas …These objectives are typically achieved by reducing vehicle speeds.” Urge your State Rep. to oppose this bill.
We can keep our streets safe without going to extremes.
Tell your State Rep. to vote 'No' on HB 2224!