California HOV lane usage UPDATE after hearing 4-12 - Toyota Prius Forum : Prius Online Toyota Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-12-2004, 10:34 PM Thread Starter
Sev
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Default California HOV lane usage UPDATE after hearing 4-12

The vote in the Transportation Committee was 11-0 in favor! Everyone's efforts certainly paid off. The next steps are as follows:
The legislation gets forwarded to the Appropriations Commitee, where it will be heard the week of May 17 at the latest. It must be reported out by May 21. (The feeling is that there is not much problem in the appropriations committee since there are virtually no costs that will not be borne by the beneficiaries of the bill.) Once the appropriations committee votes it out, it goes to the floor of the Assembly where it must be voted out by May 28. Assuming it is passed it goes over to the Senate. Similar committee hearings will be held in the Senate. Assuming it passes there too it will go to Gov. Schwartzenegger to sign. Earliest is expected to be in September. It would go into effect 1/1/2005 if the Feds pass the enabling legislation (it is in the energy bill) anytime before the end of the year.

Assemblymember Pavley's office asks that we keep up the comments and specifically that people go to her web site http://democrats.assembly.ca.gov/members/a41/ and send e-mails to her specifically so that she can include them in the package she takes to the floor of the Assembly. Keep up the good work!

Sev MacPete
San Diego, CA
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-13-2004, 12:34 PM
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Way to go Sev! One day I'll get to use the carpool lane in my Prius (May?) or on my motorcycle! Yeah!!!
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-13-2004, 04:00 PM
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Default Cast _your_ vote for hybrids in CA HOV lanes!

Quick, cast _your_ vote! The San Francisco Chronicle has an informal online poll on the front page of their "SF Gate" website today only.

Go to the SF Gate homepage and cast your vote in "The Question" box!

http://www.sfgate.com

Thanks!

- Peter
2001 & 2002 Prius
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-13-2004, 06:14 PM
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Voted! Thank you guys for the updates and links.

Beautiful young people are accidents of nature,
But beautiful old people are works of art.
-Eleanor Roosevelt
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-15-2004, 12:56 AM
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Default It's not going to be popular, but i disagree

It's not going to be popular, but I disagree with this post. The HOV lane is for High Ocupancy Vehicles (which means only two passangers for crying out loud). It's only restricted during rush hour and open to everyone at other times.

On what basis does a hybrid qualify as an HOV when it only has the driver in it? What about the coming highlander which gets less than 30 mpg? What about the suzuki convertable that I used to drive, it got 45 mpg, does it get to go in the HOV lane during rush hour? Lot's of CRX's get in the 40 MPG range, what about them?

Also, how does CHP know it's a hybrid when driving down the freeway? They can't tell, so what you are proposing is an end to the HOV lane. Maybe that is what you want, but why not be honest and just say, "We want to do away with the HOV lane"?
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-15-2004, 12:57 AM
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Default It's not going to be popular, but i disagree

It's not going to be popular, but I disagree with this post. The HOV lane is for High Ocupancy Vehicles (which means only two passangers for crying out loud). It's only restricted during rush hour and open to everyone at other times.

On what basis does a hybrid qualify as an HOV when it only has the driver in it? What about the coming highlander which gets less than 30 mpg? What about the suzuki convertable that I used to drive, it got 45 mpg, does it get to go in the HOV lane during rush hour? Lot's of CRX's get in the 40 MPG range, what about them?

Also, how does CHP know it's a hybrid when driving down the freeway? They can't tell, so what you are proposing is an end to the HOV lane. Maybe that is what you want, but why not be honest and just say, "We want to do away with the HOV lane"?
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-15-2004, 06:26 PM
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I thought the bill was intended for "low emission" vehicles, not "hybrid" specifically. Was I wrong?

Beautiful young people are accidents of nature,
But beautiful old people are works of art.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 04-16-2004, 02:15 AM
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Default Re: It's not going to be popular...

For the nay-sayers of the HOV priviledge:

Quote:
On what basis does a hybrid qualify as an HOV when it only has the driver in it? What about the coming highlander which gets less than 30 mpg? What about the suzuki convertable that I used to drive, it got 45 mpg, does it get to go in the HOV lane during rush hour? Lot's of CRX's get in the 40 MPG range, what about them?
>>Looking at the DMV site for CA (see addy below), the current qualifications are for vehicles that use alternative fuel than gasoline (like CNG or eventually hydrogen) and meet SULEV CARB ratings and ILEV federal ratings. This would add language to include hybrid behicles like the hybrid Toyotas and the Honda varities, so the alternative fuel piece will be changed.

Quote:
Also, how does CHP know it's a hybrid when driving down the freeway?
>>>Also, according to the DMV site, those of us that qualify must submit an application to CA DMV for a decal that designates our vehicles as capable of sole occupant use. The Bill also has an application cap set to prevent an over-saturation of the HOV lane. Even if all current Prius owners were to get thier decals, it would account for a significant population of CA drivers. I also hope that Highway Patrol were more diligent (or other drivers in reporting to Highway Patrol) to fining diver-only vehicles in the HOV lane without the decal (esp. in Hummer and other large vehicles).

For more info on the current verbage of the Clean Air Vehicle Decals, visit:
http://www.dmv.ca.gov/forms/reg/reg1000.htm

Cheers. Hope this helps...

2003 Classic Prius
Strata Silver
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-12-2004, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
The HOV lane is for High Ocupancy Vehicles (which means only two passangers for crying out loud). It's only restricted during rush hour and open to everyone at other times.

IMHO the purpose of the HOV lane is to reduce congestion by pairing up people who would normally drive as singles and reduce the amount of emmisions created. And yet someone in their 12mpg Expedition with a child in a car seat is qualified to drive in it? At least I'm doing half of what was intended in my Prius.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 05-12-2004, 10:28 PM
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If you want rightous indignation, how about the pregnant lady that was in the HOV lane "alone" in her car and was sited. The citation was overturned! Thank you liberal judges and sleezy lawyers prostituting the spirit of the law by hiding behind the letter of the law. (rant finished).

Premise: The ultimate goal of the HOV lane is to reduce pollution. Congested freeways cause more pollution. Letting ultra fuel efficient vehicles with only a driver use the HOV lane is a reward for actually doing something about gasoline dependence and air pollution caused by cars. Prius owners have put their money where their mouths are by buying these cars.

Who is allowed in: They have to draw the line somewhere as to which cars are allowed in the HOV lanes, and it was drawn at 45 MPG, that is, the EPA's mileage rating of the vehicle. The Prius meets that critera. Some other "fuel efficient" vehicles may not. Toyota's coming Highlander Hybrid will probably not make the cut. There will always be somebody that will have 2 people in a Hummer that gets 8MPG and be in the HOV lane. That defeats the spirit of the HOV lanes (to reduce pollution) but meets the letter of the law. (See above rant and apply it to gas hogs.)

More good reasons: Further, non-hybrid owners will see these hybrids flying past them on the congested freeways and be encouraged to drop gas guzzlers for more fuel efficient vehicles. Again, less pollution. Another good reason for letting the ultra fuel efficient in the HOV lane with any number of people in the vehicle. Increase their visibility and popularity.

Enforcement: As far as enforcement goes, it will be easy. All the police have to do is look for the decal that will be issued to qualifying cars, after the owner applies for it. (Do I hear the sound of the state cash registers ringing?) They don't even need to know what kind of car it is. One person in the car and no sticker, pull it over!

Over crowding: The proposed regulation lists a maximum number of decals that can be issued over the life of the bill. That number is significantly greater that the number of qualifying vehicles on the road. And still more than all that can be manufactured and put on the road during the time limitation of the bill. Further, the bill has a finite life span. It is not open to ALL future qualifying vehicles. In summary, the bill has several limitations that will ensure overcrowding the HOV lanes with hybrids can not happen.

Conclusion: The only reason somebody would not want to let the ultra fuel efficient vehicles in the HOV lanes is jelousy. "I don't have a AT-PZEV vehicle so you shouldn't get a privilage I can't have! Na na na!


Mike

(**** the air is thin up here on this soap box.)

'04 Prius Silver/Pkg#8
'95 Supra TT (Mileage be damned!)
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