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The Florida Senate

CS/CS/HB 657 — Enforcement of School Zone Speed Limits

by Infrastructure Strategies Committee; Transportation and Modals Subcommittee; and Rep. Koster and others (CS/CS/CS/SB 588 by Fiscal Policy Committee; Appropriations Committee on Transportation, Tourism, and Economic Development; Transportation Committee; and Senator Rodriguez)

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Transportation Committee (TR)

The bill authorizes a county or municipality to place or install, or contract with a vendor to place or install, an automated speed detection system on a street or highway under its jurisdiction or a state road if permitted by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). The system may only be used to enforce speed limits in school zones within 30 minutes before a regularly scheduled breakfast program or school session, during the entirety of a regularly scheduled school session, and within 30 minutes after the end of a regularly scheduled school session. The bill:

  • Defines the term “speed detection system” and requires a county or municipality to enact an ordinance authorizing the placement or installation of speed detection systems and to make a determination that the location of such system warrants additional enforcement.
  • Requires signage warning motorists that speed detection systems are in use.
  • Requires a 30-day public awareness campaign prior to commencing enforcement of school zone speed limits with speed detection systems.
  • Requires the governing body of a county or municipality operating such system to hold public meetings regarding system provider contracts and data reported to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV).
  • Creates a School Crossing Guard Recruitment and Retention Program, funded through retention of $5 from each citation enforced through school zone speed detection systems.
  • Requires speed detection systems to be installed according to FDOT specifications.
  • Provides requirements for issuing a notice of violation or a uniform traffic citation.
  • Establishes a $100 penalty for each violation and provides for the distribution of the proceeds to state and local government, including $60 from each citation for the local government to administer the speed detection system and other public safety initiatives and $12 from each citation for county school districts, to be shared proportionately with charter schools, for school security initiatives, student transportation, or improve student walking conditions.
  • Provides defenses for persons who receive a notice of violation or uniform traffic citation and procedures for hearings regarding violations.
  • Provides requirements for the retention and destruction of data obtained from speed detection systems.
  • Requires annual reporting by counties and municipalities that implement speed detection system programs in school zones and requires an annual summary report by DHSMV.
  • Exempts speed detection systems from DHSMV’s requirements for radar or lidar units, while requiring a speed detection system to perform self-tests as to its detection accuracy.
  • Prohibits points being imposed for a violation if unlawful speed in a school zone enforced by a speed detection system and prohibits such violations from being used for purposes of setting motor vehicle insurance rates.

If approved by the Governor, or allowed to become law without the Governor’s signature, these provisions take effect July 1, 2023.

Vote: Senate 35-3; House 95-6