HB1688 (2020) Detail

Relative to OHRV speed limits on roads.










AN ACT relative to OHRV speed limits on roads.


SPONSORS: Rep. Spang, Straf. 6; Rep. Cohen, Hills. 28; Rep. W. Thomas, Hills. 21; Rep. Moynihan, Coos 2; Sen. Watters, Dist 4; Sen. Kahn, Dist 10


COMMITTEE: Transportation






This bill requires OHRV drivers to abide by the same speed limits as motor vehicle drivers when operating on state roads and revises the procedure for initiating a petition to change a designated speed limit.


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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.






In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty


AN ACT relative to OHRV speed limits on roads.


Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:


1  New Paragraph; Rules of the Road; Speed Limitations; Basic Rule and Maximum Limits; OHRVs Added.  Amend RSA 265:60 by inserting after paragraph IV the following new paragraph:

IV-a.(a)  OHRVs traveling on state class I, II, III, III-a, and IV roads shall be subject to the same motor vehicle speed regulations as other vehicles, including penalties, to be issued by state law enforcement or local law enforcement officers.  Minors violating motor vehicle laws on state ways shall be subject to the provisions of RSA 215-A:19, IV.  Persons 18 years or older accompanying a driver under the age of 16 who exceeds state highway speed limits shall be subject to RSA 215-A:29 and penalties under state motor vehicle laws, including fines under paragraph V.

2  Establishment of State Speed Zones.  Amend RSA 265:62, IV to read as follows:

IV.(a)  The commissioner of transportation, upon the petition of the governing body of a municipality or 2/3 of the abutters in a half mile stretch of a state highway, shall determine if any prima facie speed limit hereinbefore set forth should be reduced to provide reasonable and safe conditions upon any part of the state highway system [within the compact part of cities or towns; provided, however, the resulting speed limit shall not be less than 25 miles per hour].

(b)  The petition shall designate the area of the state highway system and the reasons for the reduction in the speed limit.  The review of the petition shall include [an engineering and] a traffic investigation and consultation with the petitioners.  The commissioner shall provide the petitioners, in writing, the results of his or her findings.  The commissioner may recommend a decrease in the posted prima facie speed limit, but in no case shall the resulting speed limit be below [25] 20 miles per hour.

3  Alteration of Limits.  Amend RSA 265:63, II to read as follows:

II.  Local authorities in their respective jurisdictions shall determine by an engineering or traffic investigation the proper prima facie speed for all arterial streets and shall declare a reasonable and safe prima facie limit thereon which may be greater or less than the prima facie speed permitted hereunder [for an urban district].

4  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect 60 days after its passage.




Revised 12/31/19





AN ACT relative to OHRV speed limits on roads.


FISCAL IMPACT:      [ X ] State              [    ] County               [    ] Local              [    ] None




Estimated Increase / (Decrease)


FY 2020

FY 2021

FY 2022

FY 2023
















Funding Source:

  [    ] General            [    ] Education            [ X ] Highway           [ X ] Other - Fish and Game Fund



This bill requires off-highway recreational vehicles (OHRV) abide by the same speed limits as motor vehicles when operating on state roads.  Since this is added to RSA 265:60, which falls under Title XXI (motor vehicle laws) it is assumed any fine revenue collected would be credited to the highway fund, whereas current fish and game violations are credited to the fish and game fund.  It is unclear at this time how much, if any, impact this bill may have on highway fund or fish and game fund revenue.  


There is no method to determine how many violations could occur and be brought to court as a result of this bill, however the Judicial Branch estimates average cost of violation level cases to be $52 in FY 2021 and $54 in FY 2022.  It should be noted that average case cost estimates for FY 2021 and FY 2022 are based on data that is more than ten years old and does not reflect changes to the courts over that same period of time or the impact these changes may have on processing the various case types.  


It is assumed any fiscal impact of this bill will not occur until FY 2021.



Department of Safety, Fish and Game Department, Department of Transportation, and Judicial Branch



HB1688 at GenCourtMobile
HB1688 Discussion

Action Dates

Date Body Type
Jan. 29, 2020 House Hearing
Feb. 12, 2020 House Exec Session
House Floor Vote
Feb. 19, 2020 House Floor Vote

Bill Text Revisions

HB1688 Revision: 7763 Date: Jan. 6, 2020, 11:18 a.m.


Date Status
Jan. 8, 2020 Introduced 01/08/2020 and referred to Transportation HJ 1 P. 31
Jan. 29, 2020 Public Hearing: 01/29/2020 03:15 pm LOB 203
Feb. 12, 2020 Executive Session: 02/12/2020 10:00 am LOB 203
Committee Report: Inexpedient to Legislate (Vote 19-0; CC)
Feb. 19, 2020 Committee Report: Inexpedient to Legislate for 02/19/2020 (Vote 19-0; CC) HC 7 P. 16
Feb. 19, 2020 Inexpedient to Legislate: MA VV 02/19/2020 HJ 4 P. 26