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MMA Update: Motorcycle Riders Foundation Releases Its 2017 Legislative Agenda

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

MMA Update: Motorcycle Riders Foundation Releases Its 2017 Legislative Agenda
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Your Massachusetts Motorcycle Association is pleased to share a release by the Motorcycle Riders Foundation that outlines the MRF’s Federal Legislative Agenda for the coming year.

Each year, at the annual MRF “Meeting of the Minds”, the MRF discusses and votes on a Legislative Agenda encompassing the will of the constituent States’ Motorcycle Rights Organizations. Each Sustaining SMRO represented casts one vote following a discussion, and in some cases debate, about each item on the agenda. Your Massachusetts Motorcycle Association remains a Sustaining SMRO because without the first line of defense at the federal level, much of what we attempt to accomplish at the State Level can be rendered moot.

Your MMA encourages all riders to consider joining the MRF – the only Federal Motorcyclist Rights Organization with a daily focus on the issues that face Street Riders.

For more information, refer to the following release, or contact mrfrep@MassMotorcycle.org

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2017 Legislative Agenda

December 20, 2016

At the 2016 Motorcycle Riders Foundation’s (MRF) 32nd Annual Meeting of the Minds Conference held in Oklahoma City, OK, a Legislative Strategy Session was hosted by the MRF’s Legislative Committee. The MRF’s Federal Legislative Agenda for the 2016 Meeting of the Minds to the 2017 Meeting of the Minds annual cycle is as follows:

  • Pursue and monitor efforts related to the next highway bill (expiring in 2020). Ensure the following provisions are included:
  • Motorcycle Education & Awareness Program Grant Funding
  • Continuation of the NHTSA Lobbying Ban related to helmets
  • Continuation of Motorcycle Advisory Council (MAC) to advise the FHWA
  • Oppose any motorcycling related federal blackmails or federal sanctions
  • Monitor for any action that would negatively impact motorcycles,
  • motorcycling, and motorcyclists
  • Continuation of ban on federal funding for Motorcycle Only Checkpoints
  • SAE Motorcycle Roadside Sound Testing will be addressed by individual states
  • Continue monitoring any federal studies concerning motorcycles:
  • the Federal Crash Causation Study
  • MSF Naturalistic Study
  • Strongly oppose any federal standard proposing stamping and certifying of motorcycle exhaust systems
  • Work to discourage ALL forms of distracted driving
  • Advocate at the federal level concerning the federal definition of a motorcycle ensuring that crash and fatality statistics are separated from other classes of vehicles including autocycles,non-motorcycle powered vehicles such as mopeds, scooters, and various cabin-based steering wheel type vehicles
  • Oppose any motorcycling, motorcycle, or motorcyclist-based discriminatory legislation or rules proposed by the U.S. Congress or by any federal agency
  • Seek a legislative vehicle to include motorcyclist anti-profiling language in the 115thCongress
  • Continue participation in motorcycle related activity in the European Union, United Nations, and Canada
  • Fiercely oppose any mandatory helmet, apparel or conspicuity standards
  • Advocate for changes to the Renewable Fuel Standard including the following actions:
  • Additional research and independent studies concerning the effects of higher blends of ethanol on motorcycles
  • Guarantee the indefinite and universal availability of approved fuel blends, containing no more than 10 percent ethanol by volume
  • Make additional changes to EPA’s Misfueling Mitigation Plan (MMP) ensuring that motorcyclists are educated and protected from using federally prohibited fuel in their small engine products such as motorcycles including improving existing at-pump signage and labeling
  • Ensure the inclusion of motorcycles and biker perspective in discussions regarding Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) and emerging technologies
  • Advocate and monitor for motorcyclists concerning laws and regulations related to Autonomous Vehicles, specifically;
  • Required testing for motorcycle recognition and responsiveness
  • Electronic and cyber security systems of self-driving vehicles to maintain strong standards to ensure the safety of motorcycle users
  • Establish clear liability in crashes between autonomous and non-autonomous vehicles
  • Pursue safer roadway design strategies at the federal level
  • Continue to promote our theme of crash avoidance versus safer crashing urging NHTSA to focus on crash prevention and rider education
  • Pursue limiting funding in a relevant legislative vehicle for the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and their increasing involvement in motorcycling safety issues
  • Monitor private organizations that oppose the legislative agenda or mission of the MRF and
    investigate their funding sources to make certain they are not receiving federal tax dollars
  • Monitor public organizations for funding sources when in opposition to our legislative agenda or mission, respond appropriately if they receive federal tax dollars
  • Closely monitor the federally mandated Affordable Care Act (ACA) for potential
    motorcyclist and motorcycling discrimination as well as attempts to repeal and replace provisions of the ACA for potential motorcyclist and motorcycling discrimination
  • Fully engage the EPA on upcoming activity on motorcycle emission regulations and motorcycle drive train mandates
  • Support the Black Box Protection Act to regulate black boxes in motorcycles, seek to clarify the rights of the vehicle owner to ownership of the recorded data
  • Monitor fair tolling concepts on federally funded roadways and projects supported by federal bonds
  • Monitor and support federal efforts to study and review the benefits and harms of lane splitting and lane filtering
  • Monitor and respond to federal legislative or regulatory activity concerning the usage of the terms gang, club, known associate, and associate when referring to motorcyclists

In addition to the Federal Legislative Agenda issues, the MRF has partnered with the Sustaining State Motorcyclists Rights Organization (SSMRO) members to act as support and a resource on the following state specific issues:

  • Oppose any mandatory helmet, apparel or conspicuity standards
  • Engage with multiple partners to draft federal anti-profiling language specific to motorcyclists and work to include it in the upcoming state legislative sessions
  • Work with SSMRO members to shape autocycle legislation at the state-level as it relates to the definition of motorcycle and/or fatality and crash statistics
  • Help to inform our partners and allies the MRF position on autonomous vehicles to ensure consistency in state laws and regulations in the safety of this emerging class of vehicles

About Motorcycle Riders Foundation
The Motorcycle Riders Foundation (MRF) provides leadership at the federal level for states’ motorcyclists’ rights organizations as well as motorcycle clubs and individual riders. The MRF is chiefly concerned with issues at the national and international levels that impact the freedom and safety of American street motorcyclists. The MRF is committed to being a national advocate for the advancement of motorcycling and its associated lifestyle and works in conjunction with its partners to help educate elected officials and policymakers in Washington and beyond.