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Published April 10 2011

Ask Your Government: DOT, Highway Patrol set speed limits on ND highways

Dear Teri,

Who decides the speed limit on state highways that go through small towns? 25 mph seems slow when in cities you can go up to 40 on busy streets.

Audrey Reinhart

McVille, N.D.

Thanks for writing! As always, Jamie Olson of the North Dakota Department of Transportation tracked down an answer. Here’s what she said:

“Speed restrictions are set according to the North Dakota Century Code (Chapter 39-09). Maximum statewide speed limits are established by the North Dakota state Legislature according to road class (e.g., interstate) and geographical area, such as rural or urban.

“Local authorities have the authority to determine the proper maximum speed in their respective jurisdictions, such as county highways or local streets.

“However, the North Dakota Department of Transportation and the North Dakota Highway Patrol jointly determine the proper maximum speed on any state highways, including highways within the city limits.

“Thank you for your question.”

Dear readers,

As the North Dakota Legislature enters its final weeks, you may be wondering what laws have passed. With so many pieces of legislation out there, it’s impossible for me to write stories about every one.

But every time Gov. Jack Dalrymple signs a bill, I note it on my blog at northdakota.areavoices.

com and include the Web links for you to read more about the new laws.

Secretary of State Al Jaeger also pointed out a resource on his website to track signed bills. You can find this by going to www.nd.gov/sos Click on Lobbying and Legislative on the left side of the screen.

Under Legislative Acts, click on Bills and Resolutions. From there, you can click to see what’s passed.

Do you have a question for a North Dakota state government official or agency? Send us your question, and we’ll do our best to find an answer.

Email politics@wday.com (Subject: Ask your government).

You may also write to Teri Finneman c/o Forum Communications, Press Room, State Capitol, Bismarck, ND 58505.

Please include your name, town and a phone number to reach you for verification.


Teri Finneman is a multimedia reporter for Forum Communications Co.