By Tony Romeo

By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — A bill that would allow for a 70-mph speed limit on some sections of the Pennsylvania Turnpike has cleared its first legislative hurdle.

The measure, approved by the House Transportation Committee, would maintain 55 mph as the “default” speed limit on the Pennsylvania Turnpike, but would effectively allow turnpike officials to raise the speed limit to 70 mph in some areas, as they are already permitted to make the speed limit 65.

Some committee members expressed concerns that state police have not been consulted about the possible change, but State Rep. Richard Geist (R-Altoona), chairman of the transportation committee, says he sees no problem.

“No, I think this will attract ridership,” he told KYW Newsradio today. “I don’t think people will go any faster. People drive at a safe, comfortable speed, whatever they feel is comfortable.”

Geist says the bill would not specify what areas of the Pennsylvania Turnpike could have 70 mph speed limits; that would be up to the Turnpike Commission.

It’s not known when or if the bill will come up for a full House vote.

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