President Clinton Signs TEA 21

On June 9, 1998 the President signed the Transportation Efficiency Act for the 21st Century, (TEA 21). This is the legislation motorcyclists have been working on for two years. This bill is of major importance to the country and the development and maintenance of our Nation’s Highway. The following is a portion of the President Clinton remarks at the signing ceremony:

"Forty-two years ago this month, President Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid Highway Act into law. The bill was sponsored in the Senate by Albert Gore, Sr. It gave rise to the most efficient network of roads in the history of this country, connecting millions of Americans to the economic mainstream, ushering in two decades of unparalleled growth.
Today, I am proud to sign this bill -- the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century. It meets the challenge of building the pathways of the future, while maintaining the fiscal discipline that allowed us to achieve the first balanced budget in 29 years and an accompanying very high rate of economic growth. The act will strengthen America by modernizing and building roads, bridges, transit systems, and railways to link our people and our country together, and to permit a freer flow of goods. It supports -- as you just saw -- hundreds of thousands of jobs and a lot of good training."

After the passage of this bill by the House and Senate on May 22nd the President had ten days to sign or veto the bill, without signature the bill would go into law automatically. This bill was far too important to the country for the President to let it go unsigned. The Highway Trust Fund will be used for what it was originally intended, highway projects, construction and maintenance, and safety.

Motorcycling issues included in this legislation are: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to add accident prevention to their mission statement allowing an emphasis to be placed on rider education. By statute, motorcycles will be included into the discussions and development of the Intelligent Transportation System and not left to "afterthought fixes". There is now protection for motorcycles from being banned on roads we pay fuel taxes to design, build, and maintain unless it is a safety related reason for the ban, i.e. No Mopeds on Interstate Highways. Lastly we succeeded in severely limiting NHTSA from using our fuel tax dollars to come to our states and lobbying for legislation we opposed.

For further information contact Steve Zimmer at 202-546-0983 or by e-mail at steve@mrf.org


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