2001 - 2002 LEGISLATURE
January 26, 2001 - Introduced by Senators Breske, Schultz, M. Meyer, Baumgart,
and Darling, cosponsored by Representatives Olsen, Powers,
Musser, Bies, Ladwig, Townsend, Gronemus, Pettis, Ryba, Berceau, Vrakas,
Wade, Freese, M. Lehman, Urban, Krawczyk, Ward, Gunderson
and Plouff.
Referred to Committee on Insurance, Tourism, and Transportation.
SB29,1,8 1An Act to amend 70.112 (5), 194.01 (7), 218.0101 (23) (a) 2., 218.0114 (5) (a),
2218.0122 (3), 218.0171 (2) (b) 2. b., 285.30 (5) (c), 340.01 (4) (a), 341.067, 341.25
3(title), 341.25 (1) (b), 341.297 (1), 341.31 (1) (b) 5., 341.31 (4) (c), 342.15 (4) (a),
4342.34 (1) (c), 343.08 (1) (a) and (2) (a), 343.135 (2) (a) 1., 346.16 (2) (a), 349.105
5and 779.41 (2); and to create 218.0101 (19m), 285.30 (5) (j), 340.01 (19d),
6340.01 (27m), 343.135 (2) (a) 1m., 346.94 (18), 346.95 (8), 347.02 (8), 349.06 (4)
7and 349.237 of the statutes; relating to: low-speed vehicles, granting
8rule-making authority, and providing a penalty.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill creates a new classification of motor vehicle called a "low-speed
vehicle." A low-speed vehicle is a motor vehicle, as defined by federal law, that
complies with applicable equipment standards, but does not include a golf cart.
Currently, federal law defines a low-speed vehicle as a four-wheeled motor vehicle,
other than a truck, that attains top speeds of not less than 20 miles per hour nor more
than 25 miles per hour on a paved, level surface. The bill generally makes low-speed
vehicles subject to the same regulations applicable to other motor vehicles, including
the following:
1. Requires low-speed vehicles to be originally manufactured to meet federal
equipment standards.

2. Subjects dealers, distributors, manufacturers, and transporters of
low-speed vehicles to the same regulations that apply to dealers, distributors,
manufacturers, and transporters of motorcycles. Such regulations include requiring
business and occupational licensing, imputing liability for certain misconduct of
employees, and providing specific consumer protections, such as warranties,
remedies, and disclosure requirements.
3. Exempts low-speed vehicles from this state's property tax.
4. Requires low-speed vehicles to be registered with the department of
transportation (DOT) for a fee of $23 biennially, the same period and fee that apply
to motorcycles, and requires the display of a registration plate and valid proof of
registration. Ownership of and interests in low-speed vehicles is evidenced only by
a certificate of title, as with other motor vehicles.
5. Classifies low-speed vehicles as "Class D" vehicles which, like automobiles
and other "Class D" vehicles, may not be operated unless the operator possesses a
valid operator's license or instruction permit to operate "Class D" vehicles.
6. Requires the operators of low-speed vehicles to observe the rules of the road,
including this state's implied consent law, and subjects violators of those rules to the
same penalties as those that apply to violations committed while operating other
motor vehicles, including the assessment of demerit points and the imposition of
fines, forfeitures, and terms of imprisonment.
7. Makes low-speed vehicles subject to mechanics' liens.
However, because low-speed vehicles are smaller, lighter, and slower moving
than most other motor vehicles, the bill treats low-speed vehicles differently from
most other motor vehicles in the following respects:
1. Low-speed vehicles, other than those publicly owned and operated, are
restricted to highways having a speed limit of 35 or less miles per hour. Local
highway authorities may further regulate low-speed vehicles or may restrict their
operation to highways having a speed limit of 25 or less miles per hour.
2. Low-speed vehicles are prohibited from operating on state trunk highways
and connecting highways, even where the applicable speed limit is 35 or less miles
per hour. However, the bill allows low-speed vehicles to cross state trunk highways
or connecting highways at officially designated crossings and at intersections where
traffic is controlled by an official traffic control sign, signal, marking, or other device.
The bill makes low-speed vehicles eligible for registration by DOT as a specially
designed vehicle if the vehicle meets special equipment standards. Under current
law, a person who does not possess or is ineligible for a regular operator's license may
be issued a special restricted operator's license, which authorizes the operation of
only motor bicycles, mopeds, or specially designed vehicles and may further restrict
such operation as DOT determines is necessary, for example, to preserve the safety
of the operator and the public.
Finally, the bill categorically exempts low-speed vehicles from motor vehicle
emission limitations and testing.

For further information see the state and local fiscal estimate, which will be
printed as an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
SB29, s. 1 1Section 1. 70.112 (5) of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,3,52 70.112 (5) Motor vehicles, bicycles, snowmobiles. Every automobile,
3low-speed vehicle, motor bicycle, motor bus, motorcycle, motor truck, moped, road
4tractor, school bus, snowmobile, truck tractor, or other similar motor vehicle, or
5trailer or semitrailer used in connection therewith.
SB29, s. 2 6Section 2. 194.01 (7) of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,3,97 194.01 (7) "Motor vehicle" means any automobile, truck, trailer, semitrailer,
8tractor, motor bus or any self-propelled or motor driven vehicle, except a low-speed
motorcycle, moped, motor bicycle or a vehicle operated on rails.
SB29, s. 3 10Section 3. 218.0101 (19m) of the statutes is created to read:
SB29,3,1111 218.0101 (19m) "Low-speed vehicle" has the meaning given in s. 340.01 (27m).
SB29, s. 4 12Section 4. 218.0101 (23) (a) 2. of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,3,1513 218.0101 (23) (a) 2. Is engaged wholly or in part in the business of selling or
14leasing motor vehicles, including motorcycles and low-speed vehicles, whether or
15not the motor vehicles are owned by that person, firm or corporation.
SB29, s. 5 16Section 5. 218.0114 (5) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,4,417 218.0114 (5) (a) A motor vehicle dealer or an applicant for a motor vehicle
18dealer license shall provide and maintain in force a bond or irrevocable letter of credit
19of not less than $25,000 or, if the dealer or applicant sells or proposes to sell
20motorcycles or low-speed vehicles, or both, and not other types of motor vehicles, a
21bond or irrevocable letter of credit of not less than $5,000. The bond or letter of credit

1shall be executed in the name of the department of transportation for the benefit of
2any person who sustains a loss because of an act of a motor vehicle dealer that
3constitutes grounds for the suspension or revocation of a license under ss. 218.0101
4to 218.0163.
SB29, s. 6 5Section 6. 218.0122 (3) of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,4,86 218.0122 (3) This section does not apply to motorcycles or low-speed vehicles
7that are delivered in a crated, disassembled condition to the dealer or the dealer's
SB29, s. 7 9Section 7. 218.0171 (2) (b) 2. b. of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,4,1910 218.0171 (2) (b) 2. b. Accept return of the motor vehicle and refund to the
11consumer and to any holder of a perfected security interest in the consumer's motor
12vehicle, as their interest may appear, the full purchase price plus any sales tax,
13finance charge, amount paid by the consumer at the point of sale and collateral costs,
14less a reasonable allowance for use. Under this subdivision, a reasonable allowance
15for use may not exceed the amount obtained by multiplying the full purchase price
16of the motor vehicle by a fraction, the denominator of which is 100,000 or, for a
17motorcycle or low-speed vehicle, 20,000, and the numerator of which is the number
18of miles the motor vehicle was driven before the consumer first reported the
19nonconformity to the motor vehicle dealer.
SB29, s. 8 20Section 8. 285.30 (5) (c) of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,4,2321 285.30 (5) (c) A motor vehicle exempt from registration under s. 341.05, except
22that a motor vehicle owned by the United States is not exempt unless it comes under
23par. (a), (b), (d), (e), (f), (g) or, (h), or (j).
SB29, s. 9 24Section 9. 285.30 (5) (j) of the statutes is created to read:
SB29,4,2525 285.30 (5) (j) A low-speed vehicle, as defined in s. 340.01 (27m).
SB29, s. 10
1Section 10. 340.01 (4) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,5,42 340.01 (4) (a) Type 1 is a motor vehicle designed and used primarily for carrying
3persons but which does not come within the definition of a low-speed vehicle, motor
4bus, motorcycle, moped or motor bicycle.
SB29, s. 11 5Section 11. 340.01 (19d) of the statutes is created to read:
SB29,5,96 340.01 (19d) "Golf cart" means a vehicle whose speed attainable in one mile
7does not exceed 20 miles per hour on a paved, level surface, and is used to convey one
8or more persons and equipment to play the game of golf in an area designated as a
9golf course.
SB29, s. 12 10Section 12. 340.01 (27m) of the statutes is created to read:
SB29,5,1411 340.01 (27m) "Low-speed vehicle" means a low-speed vehicle, as defined in 49
12CFR 571.3
, that satisfies the equipment standards under 49 CFR 571.500 and which
13was originally manufactured to meet the applicable equipment standards under 49
14CFR 571.500
. "Low-speed vehicle" does not include a golf cart.
SB29, s. 13 15Section 13. 341.067 of the statutes is amended to read:
SB29,5,19 16341.067 Registration of special vehicles. The department shall register a
17specially designed vehicle which is authorized for operation by a person holding a
18special restricted operator's license under s. 343.135 if the special vehicle meets the
19equipment standards established under s. 347.02 (6) or (8).
SB29, s. 14 20Section 14. 341.25 (title) of the statutes is amended to read: