On June 9th the United States House of Representatives agreed on the Walberg Amendment to the 2015 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations bill by voice vote on the House floor, reports the Motorcycle Riders Foundation.
The Amendment offered by Congressman Tim Walberg (R-MI) along with Mr. Sensenbrenner (R-WI) and Mr. Ribble (R-WI), eliminates a provision in the 2015 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations act that would have allowed the Secretary of Transportation to discuss motorcycle safety initiatives with state legislators.
In 1998 Congress passed a law that made it illegal for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to lobby state legislatures. Prior to 1998, according to the Government Accountability Office, NHTSA had spent tens of thousands of dollars traveling to states whenever a state debated changing their own state helmet law. Seeing this as a waste of taxpayer money, the congress prohibited anyone from NHTSA to lobby states uninvited.
Mr. Walberg had this to say “This money should go to fund eliminating distracted driving, motorcycle rider education, and motorist-motorcycle awareness campaigns.”
“Put simply this is a states rights issue”, said Jeff Hennie Vice President of Government Relations and Public Affairs for the Motorcycle Rider Foundation. He added “With such limited, precious funds they need to be used in areas of safety that are proven, not for bureaucratic waste.”
The amendment was opposed on the floor by Ed Pastor (D-AZ).
The Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) thanks everyone who made calls on this important issue, your participation was key in getting this amendment to pass.
The full bill was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives the evening of June 10th with the Walberg amendment enacted.
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