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MMA helps defeat Sound Warrant in Yarmouth

MMA helps defeat Sound Warrant in Yarmouth
27 February 2013

The Massachusetts Motorcycle Association (MMA) is pleased to report that a town bylaw proposal was successfully defeated last night in Yarmouth.  With short notice, the MMA in concert with the Yarmouth Chief-of-Police and Deputy Chief attended the Board-of-Selectmen meeting last night and were successful in convincing the Board of Selectmen that such a Bylaw would be unsuccessful.

Want to get something essentially illegal passed in Massachusetts?  Do so in as covert a manner as possible so that your opponents don't know about it.  Gone are the days of open debate as the Town of Yarmouth once again proposed a bylaw which would essentially require OEM exhaust on all motorcycles entering the town.  Alerted to this proposal being presented mere hours before the meeting, the MMA sprang into response providing testimony and supporting documentation as well as representation at the Selectmen Meeting.

Armed with prior testimony used successfully around the state, including used to overturn a similar bylaw passed in Falmouth and subsequently struck down by the Commonwealth Attorney General, MMA Legislative Director Rick Gleason joined the Chief and Deputy Chief of the Yarmouth Police Department in their argument that Town Bylaws cannot exceed State Law, and that such a measure would essentially be meaningless.

The MMA has long held strong opposition to the use of the OEM EPA Stamp as an enforcement tool simply because it is a consumer protection mechanism, not meant to be used against the consumer.  It is also hard to locate on many models  of motorcycle, hidden under seats on sport bikes, under saddle bags of cruisers, or simply facing the wrong way for aesthetic reasons.  Most critically, per the very regulation that entitles it, it expires in one year or 3,729 miles, whichever comes first!!

Instead, the MMA continues to hold a firm belief that the existing laws on the books are sufficient if properly implemented and enforced, specifically that simple test procedures do exist for muffled exhaust, whether replaced with after-market or not, with a reasonable sound level.  Further, that Education, not Legislation, is key to changing the behavior of a select few who either remove their mufflers or rev throttles simply to "sound cool"…

The "Education, not Legislation" sentiment was echoed by the Yarmouth Chief-of-Police during his testimony last night.  Yarmouth PD has worked with the MMA in the past with great success implementing the MMA's "When in Town, Throttle Down©" campaign providing correct information on the Massachusetts General Laws and the impact of excessive behaviors.  The MMA has also hosted numerous voluntary sound checks around the state to help riders be more aware of the impact of their exhaust.

The MMA applauds the efforts of the Yarmouth PD which can be found on their website and Facebook page, and thanks them for their support.

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