05-21-2004

04NR25 - MRF Learns That TEA Conference Committee Is Being Formed

MRF E-MAIL NEWS
Motorcycle Riders Foundation
P.O. Box 1808
Washington, DC 20013-1808
202-546-0983 (voice)
202-546-0986 (fax)
http://www.mrf.org (website)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Jeff Hennie, MRF Vice President - Government Relations
mrfwash@mrf.org (e-mail)

May 21, 2004

#04NR25 - MRF Learns That TEA Conference Committee Is Being Formed

The Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) has learned that late Wednesday night on the Senate floor, leaders came to an agreement to proceed "in good faith" to go to conference on the reauthorization of the Transportation Equity Act (TEA), a six-year surface transportation bill. Although both the House and Senate have already begun choosing members to serve on the TEA conference committee, the conferencing process will more than likely take a long time - possibly even beyond this November's election. It took almost three months to complete the conference process the last time TEA was reauthorized almost seven years ago. That bill was set to expire on October 1, 2003, but the House and Senate have voted several times to extend it, primarily due to their continued their debate over funding.

With a presidential election less than six months away, it is difficult to predict what will actually happen with the bill at this point. Naming conferees is a big step, but as the MRF has previously reported a huge hurdle still remains. The White House has made it very clear that the President will veto any bill with a price tag of over $265 billion. The House and Senate versions are $284 and $318 billion, respectively. There is also a general agreement among House and Senate leadership that the conference committee will more than likely move the final number closer to the Senate's than the House's. Both the House and Senate have the votes to overturn a veto.

When the conferees are named in the days to come, the MRF will provide a complete list of both House and Senate members serving on the TEA conference committee. At that time, we will ask you to contact the Congressmen that are serving on the committee. Until then, the MRF urges you to continue to schedule meetings with your U.S. Senators and Representatives when they are back home in their districts during the Memorial Day recess next week, and encourage ALL of them to support the MRF's motorcycle safety initiatives that were included in Section 2009 of the House bill. You can find contact information for your U.S. Representative and your two U.S. Senators by visiting the following websites: Representative information at http://www.house.gov/writerep/ and Senate information at http://www.senate.gov.

"While this is a big step in the right direction, we still have a long way to go before this bill is finalized," said Jeff Hennie, MRF Vice President of Government Relations. "We must remain vigilant in our efforts to ensure that the final conference version of the reauthorization of TEA contains the motorcycle safety initiatives that the MRF, State Motorcyclists' Rights Organizations, and motorcyclists nationwide have been pushing for over two years."

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(c)All Information contained in this release is copyrighted. Reproduction permitted with attribution. The Motorcycle Riders Foundation, incorporated in 1987, is a membership-based, national motorcyclists' rights organization headquartered in Washington, DC. The first motorcyclists' rights organization to establish a full-time presence in Washington, DC, the Motorcycle Riders Foundation is the only Washington voice devoted exclusively to the street rider. The MRF established MRFPAC in the early 1990s to advocate the election of candidates who would champion the cause of rider safety and rider freedom.

The MRF proudly claims state motorcyclists' rights organizations and the very founders of the American riders' rights movement among its leading members. The MRF is involved in federal and state legislation and regulations, motorcycling safety education, training, and public awareness. The MRF provides members and state motorcyclists' rights organizations with direction and information, and sponsors annual regional and national educational seminars for motorcyclists' rights activists, as well as publishing a bi-monthly newsletter, THE MRF REPORTS.
- MRF: My Ride is Freedom -

The first motorcyclists' rights organization to establish a full-time legislative advocacy presence in Washington. The Motorcycle Riders Foundation is the only Washington voice devoted exclusively to the street rider. MRF established MRFPAC in the early 1990s to advocate the election of candidates who would champion the cause of rider safety and rider freedom. MRF proudly claims state motorcyclists' rights organizations and the very founders of the American rider rights movement among its leading members. Motorcyclists worldwide can thumb-start their search for rider rights and safety on the web at www.mrf.org.

All information contained in this release is copyrighted. Reproduction permitted with attribution. The Motorcycle Riders Foundation, incorporated in 1987, is an independent, membership-based national motorcyclists' rights organization headquartered in Washington D.C. which operates in co-partnership with State Motorcyclists' Rights Organizations nationwide. The MRF is involved in federal and state legislation and regulation, motorcycling safety education, training, licensing and public awareness. The MRF provides individual and SMRO member-volunteers with guidance, support and information to protect motorcyclists' rights and advance motorcycling and its associated lifestyle. The MRF sponsors annual regional and national educational seminars for motorcyclists' rights activists and publishes a bi-monthly newsletter, THE MRF REPORTS.

Voice: 202-546-0983, Fax: 202-546-0986, E-Mail: wyld@mrf.org, website: http://www.mrf.org



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