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13NR13 - MRF News Release - Motorcycle Only Checkpoint Bill To Be Dropped

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
16 April 2013

Contact:Jeff Hennie, Vice President of Government Ralations and Public Affairs

Motorcycle Only Checkpoint Bill To Be Dropped

The Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) reports, Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner from Wisconsin, announced Monday, April 15th that he will file a bill to prohibit the federal funding of motorcycle only roadside checkpoints.

Sensenbrenner had this to say in a "Dear Colleague" that is circulating in the House of Representatives. "In the 112th Congress, I introduced H.R. 904, a bill to prohibit the Department of Transportation (DOT) from providing funds to state and local authorities for the purpose of creating motorcycle only checkpoints. Section 1 of the Stop Motorcycle Checkpoint Funding Act contains the same language as H.R. 904. However, this bill also contains language to force the DOT to focus motorcycle safety efforts on crash prevention programs, not national helmet mandates."

The bill will officially be introduced on May 6, 2013 and get its official bill number then. However, we must start the push now. It's important to contact your sitting member of the House of Representatives and ask them to be an original cosponsor of this important legislation. Ask them to contact Congressman James Sensenbrenner and lend their support. An "Original Cosponsor" is someone who supports the bill before it is made public and is a way to strongly support a new bill.

The more original cosponsors the better. You can contact the US Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121

The entire text of the Dear Colleague and the Bill are below.

STOP MOTORCYCLE CHECKPOINT FUNDING

Dear Colleague:

On May 6, I will introduce a bill to protect motorcyclists' rights and promote crash prevention as the most effective use of taxpayer money to save motorcyclists' lives. I ask for your support as an original cosponsor of the Stop Motorcycle Checkpoint Funding Act.

In the 112th Congress, I introduced H.R. 904, a bill to prohibit the Department of Transportation (DOT) from providing funds to state and local authorities for the purpose of creating motorcycle only checkpoints. Section 1 of the Stop Motorcycle Checkpoint Funding Act contains the same language as H.R. 904. However, this bill also contains language to force the DOT to focus motorcycle safety efforts on crash prevention programs, not national helmet mandates.

Section 3 of the Stop Motorcycle Checkpoint Funding Act amends Section 153 of Title 23 USC by removing "motorcycle helmets" from the title. This change will prohibit the DOT from providing grants to a State to enforce helmet laws. This will stop the DOT from manipulating State policies with federal money.

Section 4 of this bill amends Section 402 of Title 23 USC. Current law states that highway safety plans must prevent accidents and reduce injuries. The Stop Motorcycle Checkpoint Funding Act would require highway safety plans to include programs that prevent accidents in order to reduce injuries and deaths resulting from accidents involving motor vehicles and motorcycles. This small change will make a significant impact because it highlights that preventing accidents is the best way to save motorcyclists' lives.

Please contact Todd Washam
(todd.washam@mail.house.gov to cosponsor this bill. I look forward to your support on this important issue.

Sincerely,

F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr.

MEMBER OF CONGRESS

A BILL

To stop motorcycle checkpoint funding, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the ''Stop Motorcycle Checkpoint Funding Act''.

SEC. 2. GRANT RESTRICTION.

The Secretary of Transportation may not provide a grant or any funds to a State, county, town, or township, Indian tribe, municipal or other local government to be used for any program to check helmet usage or create checkpoints for an operator of motorcycle or passenger on a motorcycle.

SEC. 3. MOTORCYCLE SAFETY.

Section 153 of title 23, United States Code, is amended-

(1) in the section heading by striking ''and motorcycle helmets'';

(2) in subsection (a) by striking ''such fiscal year-'' and everything that follows through ''(2) a law'' and inserting ''such fiscal year a law'';

(3) in subsection (b) by striking ''State laws'' each place it appears and inserting ''a State law'';

(4) in subsection (f) by amending paragraphs(2) and (3) to read as follows:

''(2) SECOND-YEAR GRANTS.-A State is eligible for a grant under this section in a fiscal year succeeding the first fiscal year in which a State receives a grant under this section only if the State in the preceding fiscal year had in effect at all times a State law described in subsection (a) and achieved a rate of compliance with such law of not less than 50 percent. ''(3) THIRD-YEAR GRANTS.-A State is

eligible for a grant under this section in a fiscal year succeeding the second fiscal year in which a State receives a grant under this section only if the State in the preceding fiscal year had in effect at all times a State law described in subsection (a) and achieved a rate of compliance with such law of not less than 70 percent.''

SEC. 4. HIGHWAY SAFETY PROGRAMS.

Section 402(a)(2)(A) of title 23, United States Code, is amended by striking clause(iv) and inserting the following:

''(iv) to prevent accidents in order to reduce injuries and deaths resulting from accidents involving motor vehicles and motorcycles;''.

 

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