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House passes bill to allow 70-mph speed limits

ANNAPOLIS — The House has unanimously passed a measure to raise the maximum highway speed limit from 65 mph to 70.

The bill’s chief sponsor is Del. James Malone, a Democrat from Baltimore and Howard counties, but several Republicans are sponsoring it as well. It passed the House 133-0 Thursday morning.

The Maryland Department of Transportation reports that speed limits have little effect on how fast most people drive. So it advises limits at or below the speed at which 85 percent of motorists drive on any given road.

This bill fits within that guideline, according to a report from the Department of Legislative Services.

Only 11 states have 65-mph maximums, compared to 22 where the maximum is 70 mph and 14 where it’s 75 mph, according to the DLS study.