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40,000 More Solo Drivers Allowed to Use Carpool Lanes

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Spotted Monday on a GMC Envoy in North Hollywood. Funny sticker, but a solo driver in this vehicle still cannot use carpool lanes. | Photo by Boris Zelkin/The Playground


Spotted Monday on a GMC Envoy in North Hollywood. Funny sticker, but a solo driver in this vehicle still cannot use carpool lanes. | Photo by Boris Zelkin/The Playground
While state politicians were wrapping up the penultimate day of the this year's legislative session, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger took the time to sign two bills into law. One of them was San Francisco Leland Yee's carpool lane bill.

Senate Bill 535 "extends the lifespan of existing permits for hybrid and electric vehicles," according to the LA Times. As the law was written, the hybrid program, which solo drivers of permitted cars to use the carpool lanes, would expire in 2011, but now has been pushed to 2015.

Additionally -- and here's the real kicker for some who believe carpool lanes are already too crowded -- Leland's legislation allows for 40,000 more permits to be handed out to low-emission, hybrid, and alternative fuel vehicles.

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General Motors sponsored the bill and because it past, now solo drivers of their upcoming Chevrolet Volt will be able to take advantage of carpool lanes. So will drivers of the new Toyota Prius and Nissan Leaf, says the Times.