Can’t we speed up the bylaw?

My Nikkel's Worth column

The Weyburn city council discussion on Monday night came down to a disagreement about the speed limit, in particular on Railway Avenue from 16th Street up to Government Road.
The proposal was to raise the limit from the current level of 40 km an hour to 50 — but it didn’t pass because with six councillors voting, the votes were a 3-3 split and the bylaw did not pass.
The problem is not just slow drivers versus faster drivers, but this puts all of the other aspects of the bylaw into limbo as well until the bylaw is brought back and passed.
Among other things, the school zones in Weyburn were going to have a more reasonable time limit put on, rather than the current requirement of going 30 km an hour 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This very annoying bylaw will remain in place until if or when the bylaw is ever passed by council.
Back to Railway Avenue, I have to say I agree fully with the two Jeffs, Coun. Chessall and Richards, who have both pointed out that people who claim a speed limit of 50 means people will be driving at 60 or higher speeds is ridiculous.
Coun. Richards didn’t say that on Monday, since he was the one councillor missing and is the reason the vote was a split — but he did say that during the discussions in July. He pointed out, correctly, 50 means 50, not 60.
Coun. Chessall reiterated that point, and he also said (in a reasonable manner, I thought) that if you come upon congestion or traffic while going down Railway, you should be slowing down anyway. The speed limit of 50 is a maximum, not a suggestion to go faster.
I might add that for anyone who has ever driven outside of Weyburn, 40 km an hour is in fact really slow and is not normal in any community. With all respect to Coun. Michel, it doesn’t have to be 40 here just because people in the city have gotten used to driving that slow.
What is truly annoying are drivers who just rumble along at 20 — 20!! — without any regard to other motorists whatsoever.
As has been rightly pointed out, drivers who are this slow are just as much a traffic hazard as those who speed. If you are driving at the legally-posted speed of 40 and you come upon someone just toddling along at 20, that is in fact a hazard and I wish the police would be stopping these drivers and talking to them about it.
The speed of 50 is not that big a deal on Railway, and this could be amended to 40 where the avenue goes through the downtown area from Fourth or Third over to Government Road.
This shouldn’t be that hard to figure out, and there were a lot of other improvements to the bylaw that are also being delayed in addition to the speed on Railway Avenue.

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