Pennsylvania, one of the last states holding out against legalizing neighborhood-electric vehicles (NEVs) – such as those from Global Electric Motorcars (GEM), pictured – for street use, may change its laws to allow NEVs on some streets with speed limits as high as 35 miles per hour, according to AOL's Patch website for Warmister, PA.

The State Senate passed a bill that would allow NEVs on any street with a posted speed limit of no more than 25 mph and on some roads where the speed limit is as high as 35 mph. The bill, which was sponsored by the appropriately -named Senator Stewart Greenleaf and which doesn't include golf carts, will go before the state's House of Representatives for possible approval.

NEVs have long been popular with governments and operators of entities such as college campuses and planned communities because of their relatively small footprint, rechargability and lower pricetag – their lead-acid batteries keep the cost of a typical NEV at about $9,000.

NEVs are also gradually gaining favor as on-street vehicles. Green-technology research firm Pike Research estimated last year that global annual NEV sales will increase to almost 55,000 vehicles in 2017 from about 37,000 last year, with North America accounting for about half those totals. Global sales of NEVs, which are street-legal in 46 states, could surge further if China makes them street-legal.