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AMA News

 

September 2019

 

National and Regional News

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The federal government's final management plans for 1.86 million acres in and around the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument includes additional areas for motorized off-highway recreation. The plans call for 116 acres of cross-country travel in the Little Desert Recreation Management Zone and two new motorized routes totaling about 10 miles. The plan also would close 1,464 acres in the No Man's Mesa Recreation Management Zone to motorized use. The plan also calls for consideration of specific motorized routes in the next Travel Management Plan on 1.21 million acres newly designated for limited OHV access. The full report can be downloaded at https://eplanning.blm.gov/epl-front-office/projects/lup/94706/20001993/250002378/02_GSENM-KEPA_Proposed_RMPs-Final_EIS_Volume1.pdf.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - With the government's approval of the year-round sale of fuel containing as much as 15 percent ethanol, motorcyclists and ATV riders need to be even more vigilant when filling up their vehicle's tanks. The Nebraska Corn Board is promoting increased availability of E15 fuel by offering $50,000 grants to service stations that upgrade to blender pumps that would supply the higher-ethanol blend. The blender pumps also would handle E30 and E85, which are approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for use in flex-fuel vehicles only. As more retailers install E15 pumps and offer the product throughout the year as "Unleaded88," the risk rises for motorcyclists to unintentionally pump E15 or higher blends into their tanks. None of the estimated 22 million motorcycles and ATVs in use in the United States is certified by the EPA to operate on fuel containing more than 10 percent ethanol.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - AMVETS has stepped in to organize the Rolling Thunder First Amendment Demonstration Run, an annual Memorial Day protest and gathering in the nation's capital to increase awareness of American prisoners of war and those still missing in action. Organizers of the 31-year-old event said that 2019 would be the last run, because the associated costs were too high. But AMVETS has applied for a permit for a 2020 event May 22-24 with 50,000 participants, a podium and sound system, 18 portable restrooms, a stage and more, according to a report by ConnectingVets.com. AMVETS Executive Director Joe Chenelly said his group "is not trying to take over Rolling Thunder or their organization or other rides they plan." He said he also hopes to use the 2020 event to increase knowledge about suicide among veterans.

RENO, Nev. - Tickets are on sale for the annual conferences for the National Off-Highway Vehicle Conservation Council and the International OHV Administrators Association, scheduled for Oct. 15-19. The joint conferences bring together members of the OHV community, including enthusiasts and land managers, and provide an opportunity to share insights on issues, hurdles and successes. More information is available at www.nohvcc.org/annual-conference-2019.

DES PLAINES, Ill. - Motorcycle thefts in the United States fell about 6 percent in 2018, according to a report from the National Insurance Crime Bureau. In 2018, 41,674 motorcycles were reported stolen, compared with 44,268 in 2017. The states reporting the highest number of thefts in 2018 California were (7,035), Florida (4,279), Texas (3,073), New York (1,777), South Carolina (1,743), North Carolina (1,466), Indiana (1,229), Missouri (1,194), Georgia (1,174) and Colorado (1,109). The top 10 cities for motorcycle thefts in 2018 were New York (1,310), Los Angeles (628), Miami (595), Las Vegas (540), San Diego (527), San Francisco (520), Houston (460), Philadelphia (404), Austin (329) and San Jose (322).

State News

BARSTOW, Calif. - The U.S. Bureau of Land Management is hosting a public meeting from 10 a.m. to noon Sept. 17, at the Barstow Field Office to present information about the management of the Dumont Dunes Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Area. The BLM is seeking public comments on its proposed actions. Discussions will include dates for the five holidays, road maintenance and signs and visitor center dates, hours and activities. For more information, contact Katrina Symons, Barstow field Manager, at (760) 252-6004.

CLARK FORK, Idaho - The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comments on the Buckskin Saddle Integrated Restoration Project. This scoping, or public comment period, is open and comments will be accepted through Sept. 9. Information and instructions on how to comment are available at www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=52563. The project area is about 50,000 acres in size and is located southeast of Clark Fork, Idaho and Lake Pend Oreille. The project is being proposed to address forest health, hazardous fuels and a number of other resource management needs. The proposal includes treating about 20,000 acres with both commercial and non-commercial methods. About 33 miles of roads would be constructed, 160 miles of existing roads would be reconstructed or maintained, and 8 miles of road would be decommissioned. Fifty-six miles of existing trails would be reconstructed, two new trail bridges would be installed, and two trailheads developed. For questions about this project, contact Michelle Norton at (208) 265-6667 or michelle.norton@usda.gov. The deadline for comments is Sept. 9. To submit comments, use the Forest Service's website: cara.ecosystem-management.org/Public//CommentInput?Project=52563. The project website is at www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=52563.

AUBURN, Wash. - The Washington Off Highway Vehicle Alliance and the Northwest Motorcycle Association received more than $600,000 in grant funding to improve trails in the state. The groups said their grant is the first such award in the state for nonprofit OHV organizations.

SNOHOMISH, Wash. - The City Council approved a one-year pilot program that will allow ATVs on city street that have speed limits of 35 mph or slower. Residents told the Council they wanted an alternative form of transportation that was nimble and fuel efficient. Drivers must be licensed and insured and follow all vehicle driving laws. The Snohomish County Council scheduled a public hearing for Sept. 11 to discuss allowing ATVs on all 35 mph roads east of Highway 9.

International News

PARIS - Increasing the use of powered two-wheelers and reducing the use of cars, trucks and buses would help reduce pollution, according to a report from the French National Agency for Food, Environment and Occupational Health and Safety. The agency recommends a 50 percent increase in the number of powered two-wheelers, gas or electric. The report also calls for a 25 percent reduction in the number of passenger cars, a 20 percent cut in use of light trucks and a 75 percent increase in diesel and electric buses. The recommendation echoes the position of the Federation of European Motorcyclist Association and its French affiliate, the Fédération Française des Motards en Colère, or FFMC, also known in English as the French Federation of Angry Bikers.

KIGALI, Rwanda - The government plans to issue a policy that would eliminate gas-powered motorcycles in the taxi section and encourage the use of electric motorcycles. Official estimate that 20,000 to 30,000 moto-taxis operate in the capital city. The new policy is part of an overall plan to convert the country's entire transportation network to electric power.

Industry News

IRVINE, Calif. - The Motorcycle Industry Council is launching a broad, long-term initiative to bring more people into the world of motorcycling. The MIC hired consulting firm Centauric LLC to lead the first phase of its initiative. The plan will be presented at the MIC's American International Motorcycle Expo Presented by Nationwide in September in Columbus, Ohio.

PUNE, MAHARASHTRA, India - India's Bajaj Auto and its Austrian partner KTM are developing high-end electric motorcycles, Bajaj's Executive Director Rakesh Sharma told MoneyControl.com. Bajaj holds a 48 percent stake in KTM. The Indian government is aggressively pushing for electric vehicles to curb pollution and reduce India's dependence on fossil fuels. KTM's only electric model, the Freeride E-XC, is not available in India.

COLUMBUS, Ohio - AIMExpo presented by Nationwide, one of the largest motorcycle expositions and powersports trade shows in the country, will bring distributors, dealers, media, enthusiasts and riders to the Greater Columbus Convention Center Sept. 26-29. AIMExpo Outdoors! will be open to the general public on all four days of the show, featuring demo rides on 2020 models from nine manufacturers. The show floor is open to general public on Saturday and Sunday. More information, including ticket prices, is available at aimexpousa.com/aimexpo-general-information.

STURGIS, S.D. - The final traffic count for the 2019 Sturgis motorcycle rally was about 1 percent lower than the 2018 event. The state Department of Transportation said 499,654 vehicles entered Sturgis between Aug. 2 and Aug. 11, compared to 505,969 during the 2018 rally.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - Everyone is invited to the 2019 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Fall Bike Night, offering free admission to the Hall of Fame museum, a bike show, exhibitions, live music, vendors and more from 5-9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 27. The event, which starts when AIMExpo closes for the day, will be on the campus of the American Motorcyclist Association, 13515 Yarmouth Drive in Pickerington. AIMExpo presented by Nationwide, a motorcycle and powersports trade show, is Sept. 26-29 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio, just a short ride or drive from Pickerington. The AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Bike Show, presented by Old Bike Barn, includes classes for custom, classic and current bikes. Entry is a $5 donation to the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation. 2019 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Spring Bike Night drew hundreds to the AMA campus. Bands will perform throughout the evening on the Old Bike Barn stage. National pro trials rider Sam Fastle will be demonstrating his motorcycle mastery at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. Beer from North High Brewing will be available for purchase, as well as food from various food trucks. All proceeds from Bike Night benefit the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. Complete information is available at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Home/AMA-News-And-Press-Releases/ama-motorcycle-hall-of-fame-fall-bike-night-features-bike-show-live-music-food-vendors-more.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - The AMA has added Motorcycle Shippers as a member benefit partner, providing AMA members with savings of $25 per bike or $100 round trip on shipping, door-to-door transport, with online tracking and booking. Motorcycle Shippers, based in Fountain Valley, Calif., specializes in transporting motorcycles in enclosed trucks. The company uses custom-designed straps to secure motorcycles to pallets and provides $7,000 of valuation coverage at no additional cost. The Motorcycle Shippers AMA Partner page is at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/For-Members/Member-Discount-Codes/motorcycle-shippers-1.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - Sideways Saturday, an AMA-sanctioned indoor flat track event will be held Sept. 28 in Columbus, Ohio, as part of AIMExpo presented by Nationwide. This event will feature hooligans, e-bikes, wild customs ridden by amateur and pro racers. Classes include Hooligans, Flat Track Futures (ages 11-14), Run What Ya Brung, E-bike and Industry. Tickets to Sideways Saturday are available through www.motoshowtickets.com.

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AMA News & Notes is a monthly publication compiled and edited by the American Motorcyclist Association. Designed to inform motorcyclists of rights-related issues and events in the United States and around the world, AMA News & Notes welcomes your input. Suggestions and editorial contributions can be sent to AMA Managing Editor Jim Witters at jwitters@amacycle.org.

Sign up and stay informed: AMA News & Notes keeps motorcyclists up-to-date on hot topics, news affecting the motorcycling community and opportunities to communicate with elected officials. Click here to check the "Sign me up for News & Notes" box.

AMA Action Alerts notify motorcyclists when and how to make a difference on important issues. Click here to see the most recent AMA Action Alerts, or to sign up and receive them.

Readers also may sign up for other AMA e-newsletters, including Hall of Fame Insider, which focuses on the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. To subscribe, click here.

Protect your right to ride! Volunteering is easy, and it's rewarding. To learn how you can help, visit us online.

Follow the AMA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AmericanMotorcyclist, on Twitter @ama_rights, @ama_riding and @ama_racing and on Instagram at @ama_riding and @ama_racing.


August 2019

 

National and Regional News

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The federal highway bill introduced July 29 in the U.S. Senate contains a provision calling for a study of funding levels for the Recreational Trails Program, which the AMA believes has been underfunded for years. The program receives revenue from the sale of fuel for nonhighway use. That money helps pay for recreational trails for motorized and nonmotorized use. Typically, annual funding is about $84 million. But the Recreational Trails Coalition-which includes the AMA-believes the trail fund should receive more than $270 million a year.

WASHINGTON, D.C. -The Office of United States Trade Representative has proposed 100 percent tariffs on motorcycles imported from countries in the European Union with an engine size between 500cc and 700cc, along with parts and accessories. The AMA is joining others in the motorcycling community to oppose the latest ill-conceived proposal -- part of a dispute over aircraft subsidies -- which would cause serious, and potentially irreversible, harm to American small- and medium-sized business owners selling the motorcycles, parts and accessories. To register your opinion, go to https://tinyurl.com/y2x7oq8m.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The federal government has closed about 42 square miles of the Bears Ears National Monument in Utah to motorized recreation, much less than the 184 square miles targeted for closure by anti-access advocates and tribal officials. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management plan for the monument says that the historic sites most at risk will remain off limits to motorized access.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Bureau of Land Management plans to move its headquarters from Washington, D.C., to Colorado to put more agency officials closer to the land they oversee. About 4 percent of BLM employees live in D.C., according to a report in The Hill. The move would leave just 60 of the nearly 400 BLM employees in the nation's capital. Twenty-seven BLM employees will be transferred to the new headquarters in Grand Junction, Colo., while others will be in Utah, Nevada and other existing local BLM offices. The agency has about 10,000 employees. The House Committee on Natural Resources has scheduled a Sept. 10 hearing about the proposed move.

State News

FOLSOM, Calif. - The city has installed new traffic signals that use high-definition cameras that can tell how fast vehicles are approaching, triggering the light to change according to traffic flow. Six of the lights were installed along Empire Ranch Road, where city officials say drivers frequently were speeding. The lights change their timing, so someone driving faster than the posted speed limit will be stopped at several red lights. City officials say the lights will not be used for law enforcement.

TRACY, Calif. - Senate Bill 767, which encourages the sale of the Carnegie expansion property, known as the Alameda-Tesla Expansion Area, was approved by the California State Assembly Committee on Accountability and Administrative Review. The land in question was purchased using funds from the Off Highway Vehicle Trust Fund, and adjacent landowners agreed to the future use of the land for motorized recreation. Subsequently, extensive work was undertaken to correct previous neglect and to bring the property up to the environmental standards mandated by state law. However, the current bill seeks to deny the OHV community a long overdue opportunity for increased motorized recreation, penalizing Californians who enjoy recreation on state-owned public lands. The AMA opposes this bill and urges all riders and their supporters to contact their elected officials.

OCEANO, Calif. - The California Coastal Commission rejected a staff recommendation on July 11 and voted to keep the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area open for responsible motorized recreation. In a June 21 report, the staff said the change is needed because of issues regarding "air quality and public health, rare and endangered species and habitats, environmental justice, and tribal concerns." The report is part of the State Parks effort to develop a new long-term plan for its programs, facilities, campgrounds and OHV areas at Oceano Dunes. The AMA applauds the commission decision.

UKIAH, Calif. - The South Cow Mountain OHV Management Area has reopened to the public following repairs related to 2018's Mendocino Complex fires. Fire damage was worsened by winter rains. Some motorized-use trails will remain closed because of burned bridges, washouts and hazard trees. Visitors are cautioned to pay attention to signs and stay off of closed routes for safety and to protect natural resources. Visitors should use only designated roads and trails and avoid driving on bulldozer fire lines. The South Cow Mountain OHV Management Area provides more than 100 miles of trails for riders and drivers of all abilities using motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, four-wheel-drive trucks and utility vehicles. Visitors can expect to see fallen trees on some trails.

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Motorcycle tolls would be cut in half under a plan to modernize Maryland's toll system in 2020. A public comment period begins today, Aug. 1, for the new tolling options proposed by the Maryland Transportation Authority board. The public comment period ends at 5 p.m. Oct. 3. A final report will be submitted Oct. 31 for review by the MDTA board and will be posted at mdta.maryland.gov for additional public comment. The board is scheduled to vote on a final recommendation at its Nov. 21 meeting. Gov. Larry Hogan said the toll relief package would save Marylanders more than $28 million over five years.

CONCORD, N.H. - A memorial is being planned for the seven motorcyclists killed in a June crash caused by a pickup truck that crossed the centerline. American Legion Post 82 in Gorham hopes to create the memorial near the crash site in Randolph, N.H. The memorial would include a granite slab with the Jarheads Motorcycle Club logo on it, as well as benches, the U.S. Marine Corps logo and a parking area. The Jarheads is a New England motorcycle club that includes Marines and their spouses. The pickup driver, 23-year-old Volodymyr Zhukovskyy, of West Springfield, Mass., has pleaded not guilty to negligent homicide. Officials say Zhukovskyy's license should have been suspended because of a previous drunken driving arrest.

PORTLAND, Ore. - The state Parks and Recreation Department is seeking volunteers for two upcoming vacant positions on the All-Terrain Vehicle Advisory Committee. Successful candidates will also serve on the ATV Grant Subcommittee. The committees review crashes and fatalities resulting from ATV recreation; review changes to statutory vehicle classifications for safety considerations; review safety features of all classes of OHVs; and recommend safety requirements to protect child and adult OHV operators. To apply for one of the open positions, visit www.oregon.gov/oprd/ATV/Pages/ATV-Advisory-Committee.aspx and click the "Committee Interest Form" at the bottom of the page. Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. Aug. 30. For more information, contact Jeff Trejo, OPRD ATV safety education coordinator, at jeff.trejo@oregon.gov or (503) 986-0585.

OLYMPIA, Wash. - Fines increased July 28 for repeat offenders and new fines became effective for those violating the high-occupancy-vehicle lane law by using dummies to cheat the rules that require two or more occupants per car. The maximum fine is $536. Motorcycles are permitted in Washington's HOV lanes whether the rider is carrying a passenger or not.

MADISON, Wis. - ABATE of Wisconsin reports that two state senators are circulating a draft bill that would allow retailers to dispense all blends of fuel through one pump nozzle. The bill (LRB 2170/P1) would apply to fuel blends up to 15 percent ethanol (E15). The AMA joins ABATE of Wisconsin in opposing this bill, which would dramatically increase the likelihood of inadvertent misfueling by motorcyclists. No motorcycles or ATVs sold in the United States are certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to operate on fuel containing more than 10 percent ethanol (E10).

International News

LONDON - Drivers who cause someone's death as a result of looking at their phones while driving could face life in jail. The current maximum penalty is 14 years. Last year, 122 people were sentenced for causing death by dangerous driving and a further 21 people were convicted for killing someone when under the influence of drink or drugs. British Transport Secretary Chris Grayling backs the plan to make the punishment better fit the crime.

Industry News

MILWAUKEE - The Harley-Davidson Motor Company is offering two years of free charging for its LiveWire electric motorcycle at ChargePoint stations at participating Harley dealers. The company also is providing 500 kWh of charging service at Electrify America stations. The LiveWire is Harley's first electric motorcycle, claiming a range of 140 miles of city driving per charge.

MILWAUKEE - The Harley-Davidson Museum's new exhibition, "Daredevils: A Century of Spine-Tingling Spectacles," shines a new light on daredevil shows. The oldest artifacts on display include the "Globe of Death" from 1912; photos of the Parry Sisters in action from around 1915; and old show posters. Covered are the exploits of Buffalo Bill Cody, Evel Knievel, Super Joe Einhorn, Matt MacDuff, Debbie Evans, Dar Robinson, Bubba Blackwell, Joey Chitwood, and others. There are motorcycles, costumes, posters, photographs and videos to see.

IRVINE, Calif. - Bonnier Motorcycle Group has launched a digital media brand focused on electric mobility called Cycle Volta. The digital brand covers electric-assist bicycles, micromobility and electric motorcycles across digital, video (including YouTube) and social media platforms. Additional e-bike information will be distributed through content-syndication partners.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - Tens of thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts spent July 5-7 reveling in the vintage motorcycling experience at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, where they found racing, entertainment, the world's largest vintage motorcycle swap meet, seminars, a bike show and more during 2019 Honda AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, presented by Avon Tyres. The three-day event in Lexington, Ohio-organized and promoted annually by the American Motorcyclist Association-raises funds to maintain the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame museum in Pickerington, Ohio. For a full recap of the event, see the September issue of American Motorcyclist magazine.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - Cameron Krezman and Levi Leutz won the 250cc Class and 150cc Class titles at the 2019 AMA Youth Speedway National Championship at Fast Friday's Motorcycle Speedway in Auburn, Calif., on July 12. The event pitted the nation's best speedway racers, 17 years old or younger, against each other in two competition classes. The 2019 national championship event featured 26 riders vying for AMA No. 1 plates. Read more at www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Home/AMA-News-And-Press-Releases/krezman-leutz-named-class-champions-at-2019-ama-youth-speedway-national-championship-1.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - Fourteen riders won 21 class titles during the 2019 AMA Flat Track Grand Championship, which featured short track, TT and half-mile competition July 23-26 in Ohio. The top performer was Trevor Brunner, a 16-year-old from Aurora, Ind., who claimed four AMA No. 1 plates. He won eight main events and finished runner up in seven to capture the 251cc-500cc DTX, 450cc Modified, 450cc-Open Singles and 450cc-Open Modified class titles. Brunner also was named the 2019 Nicky Hayden AMA Flat Track Horizon Award winner. Established in 1997, the award is designed to recognize riders who are about to move from the youth ranks into amateur racing and from the amateur ranks into pro competition. Also named at the event was the winner of the 2019 Fast Brain Award, 10-year-old Ryder Reese of Elmira, N.Y. The AMA Fast Brain Award is an educational scholarship that is funded by contributions from AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Bill Werner of Bill Werner Racing, Zanotti Racing's Dave Zanotti and flat track and road racing team owner Tim Estenson.

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AMA News & Notes is a monthly publication compiled and edited by the American Motorcyclist Association. Designed to inform motorcyclists of rights-related issues and events in the United States and around the world, AMA News & Notes welcomes your input. Suggestions and editorial contributions can be sent to AMA Managing Editor Jim Witters at jwitters@amacycle.org.

Sign up and stay informed: AMA News & Notes keeps motorcyclists up-to-date on hot topics, news affecting the motorcycling community and opportunities to communicate with elected officials. Click here to check the "Sign me up for News & Notes" box.

AMA Action Alerts notify motorcyclists when and how to make a difference on important issues. Click here to see the most recent AMA Action Alerts, or to sign up and receive them.

Readers also may sign up for other AMA e-newsletters, including Hall of Fame Insider, which focuses on the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. To subscribe, click here.

Protect your right to ride! Volunteering is easy, and it's rewarding. To learn how you can help, visit us online.

Follow the AMA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AmericanMotorcyclist, on Twitter @ama_rights, @ama_riding and @ama_racing and on Instagram at @ama_riding and @ama_racing.


July 2019

 

National and Regional News

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Forest Service formally proposed revisions June 13 to its National Environmental Policy Act or NEPA regulations. That announcement followed an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking in January 2018, when nearly all public comments supported NEPA streamlining. Central in the proposed change is the agency's desire to address inefficiencies in its use of human and financial resources-limited by urgent issues, such as wild fires-while still completing complex NEPA requirements. The Forest Service faces a backlog of more than 5,000 applications for new or renewed special use permits and an annual average of more than 3,000 such applications. The AMA has received complaints from members about bureaucratic delays and applauds this opportunity to weigh in. Permits for annual OHV events are among the most obvious example of efficiencies. A webinar has been scheduled to explain the proposed changes: 3:30-5 p.m. ET July 12. Audio feed at (877) 369-5243 or (617) 668-3633. Access Code: 0849770##. Adobe Connect URL: https://usfs.adobeconnect.com/neparule-1000. To submit comments, use the Forest Service public participation portal (www.regulations.gov). Enter "84 FR 27544" in the search box at the upper right of the webpage. Another option is email to nepa-procedures-revisions@fs.fed.us Or send your comments to NEPA Services Group, c/o Amy Barker, USDA Forest Service, 125 S. State St., Suite 1705, Salt Lake City, UT 84138. The comment deadline is Aug. 12.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers association has filed suit to block the EPA's effort to expand sales of higher ethanol blends of gasoline, arguing the move exceeded the administration's authority. A summertime ban on  E15 (fuel with 15 percent ethanol) sales had been in place to reduce smog emissions, but the EPA said this year that E15's impact on air quality was similar to that of E10, which can already be sold year-round. The AMA opposes year round sales of E15 because increased availability heightens the risk that motorcyclists may inadvertently misfuel. None of the estimated 22 million motorcycles and ATVs in use in the United States is approved by the EPA to operate on fuel containing more than 10 percent ethanol. Using higher ethanol blends may cause fuel system or engine damage and could void manufacturers' warranties.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The AMA urges all motorcyclists and ATV riders to contact their U.S. senators in support of S.B. 1527, which would increase federal funding for responsible off-road recreation. The federal Recreational Trails Program has used off-highway vehicle users' federal gas taxes to fund more than 24,000 trail projects nationally since 1992. It is clearly one of the best tools we have to help fund trail construction and maintenance. U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) introduced legislation that takes the first, important step toward getting RTP the full funding it deserves. Ask your senator to co-sponsor the bill by using this AMA Action Alert: http://cqrcengage.com/amacycle/app/take-action?engagementId=500602

State News

PHOENIX - The Arizona Resource Advisory Council is scheduled to meet July 17-18. The 15-member statewide RAC provides advice and recommendations to the Bureau of Land Management on land issues for about 12.2 million acres of federal surface lands and 36 million acres of subsurface minerals in Arizona. The AMA encourages its members to become involved with federal advisory councils because they have a documented ability to influence and guide agency priorities. Volunteers on these councils can help identify projects that may not initially seem to be related to off-highway vehicles, yet can have a direct effect on riding areas. For example, discussion of a timber harvest project may not fully consider its effect on existing OHV opportunities. For more information, contact Dolores Garcia, RAC coordinator at (602) 417-9241 or DAGarcia@blm.gov or visit www.blm.gov/get-involved/resource-advisory-council/near-you/arizona.

TRACY, Calif. - Senate Bill 767, which encourages the sale of the Carnegie expansion property, known as the Alameda-Tesla Expansion Area, has passed the state Senate and is scheduled to be heard July 3 in the California State Assembly Committee on Accountability and Administrative Review. It is critical that riders and their supporters remind their representatives that the land in question was purchased using funds from the Off Highway Vehicle Trust Fund, with agreement as to the future purpose of the land signed by adjacent landowners. Subsequent to the purchase of the land, extensive work was undertaken to correct previous neglect and to bring the property up to the high environmental standards mandated by state law. However, the bill instead seeks to deny the OHV community a long overdue opportunity for increased motorized recreational opportunities. Passage of this legislation would support privatization of public land and penalize many Californians looking forward to enjoying recreation on state-owned public lands.

OCEANO, Calif. - Off-highway vehicle recreation at the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area could end, if the California Coastal Commission adopts its staff's recommendations. In a June 21 report, the staff said the change is needed because of issues regarding "air quality and public health, rare and endangered species and habitats, environmental justice, and tribal concerns." The report is part of the State Parks effort to develop a new long-term plan for its programs, facilities, campgrounds and OHV areas at Oceano Dunes. The AMA opposes the elimination of responsible OHV activity at the Dune's and encourages everyone to attend the next coastal commission meeting on July 11.

ALAMOGORDO, N.M. - The U.S. Forest Service has announced the beginning of scoping to kick off the Forest Plan revision process for the Lincoln National Forest. Despite the agency's intention that they be updated every 10 to 15 years, the current plan was approved in 1986. One of the 21 needs highlighted in process is the conflict between forest user groups. Motorcycle and ATV riders are encouraged to submit comments on the plan before the July 31 deadline. Review documents for the plan revision here:  www.fs.usda.gov/detail/lincoln/landmanagement/planning/?cid=STELPRD3814307. Submit comments at lnf_fpr_comments@fs.fed.us or through the U.S. mail to Lincoln National Forest, Attn: Forest Plan, 3463 Las Palomas Road, Alamogordo, NM 88310. For more information, contact Diane Prather, forest planner, at the address above or by phone at (575) 434-7200.

FRENCHGLEN, Ore. - The 12-member Steens Mountain Advisory Council, formed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management under the Steens Mountain Cooperative Management and Protection Act of 2000, meets July 8-9. The act provided long-term protection for the cultural, economic, ecological and social health of the Steens Mountain Area. The AMA encourages its members to become involved with federal advisory councils because the councils have a documented ability to influence and guide agency priorities. Volunteers on these councils can help identify projects that may not initially seem to be related to off-highway vehicles, yet can have a direct effect on riding areas. For example, discussion of a timber harvest project may not fully consider its effect on existing OHV opportunities. For more information, contact Tara Thissell, public affairs specialist, BLM Burns district office, (541) 573-4519, or tthissell@blm.gov or visit www.blm.gov/get-involved/resource-advisory-council/near-you/oregon-washington/steens-mac.

International News

LONDON - Beginner British drivers will receive motorcyclist awareness training in an effort to make roads safer for vulnerable travelers. The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency will incorporate a series of videos into its curriculum. The videos were developed with help from motorcyclist Ria Brisland, whose son died in 2015 after colliding with a car.

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia - The Addis Ababa mayor wants to ban motorcycles in the city, because the vehicles have been used in criminal activity. Takele Uma said criminals have been using motorcycles to engage in assaults and robberies of Addis Ababa residents. The ban, scheduled to take effect July 7, will not affect those conducting licensed business with motorcycles, those who use motorcycles as postal carriers and motorcycles used by diplomatic missions.

Industry News

MATTIGHOFEN, Austria - KTM Industries is working with Indian vehicle manufacturer Baja Auto to develop a 48-volt platform for electric two-wheelers, with production to begin in 2022. Both KTM and Bajaj plan to build scooters and mopeds. KTM also is working on electric two-wheelers under its Pexco and Husqvarna brands.

NEW DELHI - Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India said the adoption of electric vehicles is a major challenge while asking the government for more time before implementing a ban on internal combustion three-wheelers by 2023 and two-wheelers up to 150 cc by 2025. Smaller bikes and scooters account for more than 80 percent of the market sector. Honda asked the government to consider the impact on employment, cost of technology and availability of raw materials, among other factors, according to a report in Financial Express.

HAMAMATSU, Japan - Yamaha has unveiled a new electric scooter, the EC-05, in partnership with Gogoro, the electric scooter company in Taiwan. Gogoro is perhaps best known for its swappable battery packs and charging stations. The Yamaha EC-05 is currently slated to begin deliveries in August. It will initially only be available in Taiwan.

COVENTRY, U.K. - The limited edition Arc Vector electric motorcycle promises a range of 387 miles in urban areas and 230 miles at speed for the $114,000 MSRP. The company claims a 40-minute charge time. Performance is estimated at 60 mph in 2.7 seconds, with a top speed of 150 mph. The company plans to produce only 399 units.

MILWAUKEE, Wis. - Harley-Davidson Inc. has reached agreement with Chinese motorcycle manufacturer Qianjiang Motorcycle Co. to make a 338cc motorcycle to be sold in its overseas markets. Harley said the bike will be a premium product in China that looks and sounds unmistakably like a Harley. It is debut by the end of 2020.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - In just a few short days, 2019 Honda AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days presented by Avon Tyres kicks off at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. From July 5-7, motorcycle fans can enjoy all things vintage motorcycle, including North America's largest vintage motorcycle swap meet, vintage and post-vintage competition in hare scrambles, motocross, trials, flat track and road racing and several forms of exhibition racing. There will be live music, a bike show, performances at the American Motor Drome Wall of Death, seminars, demo rides by Honda and Harley-Davidson and more. The event celebrates 60 years of Honda's presence in North America and the 50th anniversary of the iconic Honda CB750. AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famers Bubba Shobert and Scott Summers are co-grand marshals and will be attending the event all three days. The event also is the seventh of eight events on the 2019 AMA National Gypsy Tour. Full details are available at www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - The AMA has announced the 10 Trophy team riders who will represent the United States at the 2019 FIM International Six Days Enduro in Portimao, Portugal, Nov. 11-16. The riders will compete as the U.S. World Trophy, Junior World Trophy and Women's World Trophy teams. The 2019 U.S. World Trophy Team includes: Ryan Sipes of Ekron, Ky., KTM 250 XC-F; Kailub Russell of Boonville, N.C., KTM 350 XC-F; Taylor Robert of Scottsdale, Ariz., KTM 450 XC-F; and Steward Baylor of Hodges, S.C., KTM 500 EXC-F. The 2019 U.S. Junior World Trophy Team, made up of riders age 23 and younger includes: Josh Toth, of Winsted, Conn., KTM 250 XC-F; Grant Baylor, of Belton, S.C., KTM 450 XC-F; and Ben Kelley, of Harwinton, Conn., KTM 450 XC-F. The 2019 U.S. Women's World Trophy Team includes: Jordan Jarvis of Clayton, N.C., Yamaha YZ250FX; Brandy Richards, of Lake Havasu City, Ariz., KTM 250 XC-F; and Becca Sheets, of Circleville, Ohio, KTM 250 XC-F. For complete information, visit the AMA website.

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AMA News & Notes is a monthly publication compiled and edited by the American Motorcyclist Association. Designed to inform motorcyclists of rights-related issues and events in the United States and around the world, AMA News & Notes welcomes your input. Suggestions and editorial contributions can be sent to AMA Managing Editor Jim Witters at jwitters@amacycle.org.

Sign up and stay informed: AMA News & Notes keeps motorcyclists up-to-date on hot topics, news affecting the motorcycling community and opportunities to communicate with elected officials. Click here to check the "Sign me up for News & Notes" box.

AMA Action Alerts notify motorcyclists when and how to make a difference on important issues. Click here to see the most recent AMA Action Alerts, or to sign up and receive them.

Readers also may sign up for other AMA e-newsletters, including Hall of Fame Insider, which focuses on the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. To subscribe, click here.

Protect your right to ride! Volunteering is easy, and it's rewarding. To learn how you can help, visit us online.

Follow the AMA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AmericanMotorcyclist, on Twitter @ama_rights, @ama_riding and @ama_racing and on Instagram at @ama_riding and @ama_racing.


June 2019

 

National and Regional News

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency sent its 2020 proposal for renewable fuel volume obligations to the White House Office of Management and Budget on May 6. The proposed rule, part of the federal Renewable Fuel Standard, sets forth the levels of ethanol to be blended into the nation's fuel supply next year. It also includes 2021 standards for biomass-based diesel. EPA spokesman Michael Abboud declined to disclose the proposed levels of ethanol for 2020. However, a Reuters news report stated that total RVO would be 20.04 billion gallons in 2020, up from 19.92 billion gallons in 2019. The amount of conventional biofuels, like ethanol, would remain unchanged from 2019 at 15 billion gallons. Advanced biofuels, like those made from agricultural wastes, would increase from 4.92 billion in 2019 to 5.04 billion gallons in 2020. The AMA would object to any increase in the amount of ethanol blended into the nation's fuel supply that would result in a decrease in availability of ethanol-free fuel (E0) or fuel containing 10 percent ethanol (E10). None of the estimated 22 million motorcycles and ATVs in use in the United States is certified by the EPA to operate on fuel containing more than 10 percent ethanol. Higher ethanol blends can cause engine damage and void manufacturers' warranties. OMB review is the final step in the process before the proposed rule is released to the public for comment. The EPA is charged with issuing a final rule in November.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U. S. Rep. Bill Flores (R-Texas) has introduced the "Food and Fuel Consumer Protection Act of 2019" (H.R. 2540) that would prevent EPA Renewable Fuel Standard blending obligations from requiring ethanol to exceed 9.7 percent of the total volume of gasoline projected to be sold in the United States in any year. Flores introduced a similar bill in 2016.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency delivered its proposed Renewable Fuel Standard "reset" rule to the White House Office of Budget and Management on May 20. OMB review marks a final step before a proposed rule is released for public comment. The provisions of the RFS program require the EPA to reset its annual renewable volume obligations for future years if waivers of those volumes in past years meet certain thresholds. The EPA notice says those thresholds have been met or are expected to be met in the near future. So the EPA has proposed adjusting the RVOs for cellulosic biofuels, advanced biofuels and total renewable fuel for the 2020-2022. The "reset" rulemaking is separate from the agency's proposed rule to set RVOs for 2020, along with the RVO for 2021.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Secretary of the Interior David L. Bernhardt announced the commitment of more than $106.8 million to support 47 public lands projects throughout Nevada and the California side of the Lake Tahoe Basin. These projects, which encompass a broad range of recreation improvements, wildlife habitat conservation, and hazardous fuels reduction and wildfire prevention projects, will be funded through the sale of public lands under the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act. Receiving funds in Round 17 are: the City of North Las Vegas, White Pine County, City of Las Vegas, Clark County, Lincoln County, City of Henderson, National Park Service, Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The AMA and a broad spectrum of trail-advocacy organizations are teaming up with the U.S. Forest Service to improve both motorized and nonmotorized trails in national forests. The AMA has twice been involved in similar, successful joint grant efforts. Any project that meets national quality standards will qualify for consideration. The program originated in a partnership between the Forest Service and the National Wilderness Stewardship Alliance. It is being administered collaboratively by the NWSA, the AMA, the National Off Highway Vehicle Conservation Council/NOHVCC, the International Mountain Biking Association, the American Hiking Society and the Backcountry Horsemen of America. For more information, visit www.wildernessalliance.org or contact the AMA at grassroots@AMAcycle.org. The deadline for applications is June 14.

State News

HARTFORD, Conn. - The House of Representatives passed a bill (H.B. 6161) that would require motorcyclists 20 years old or younger to wear a helmet while riding. Deputy Speaker Michelle Cook (D-Torrington) sponsored the bill. The law would take effect October 1, 2019, and violators could have to pay a fine of up to $90. The bill applies to drivers of motorcycles, motor scooters, mopeds and motorbikes.

BATON ROUGE, La. - H.B. 141, which would create a law enforcement training program on motorcyclist profiling, passed the House, 91-0, on May 15 and is now before the Senate. The bill defines motorcyclist profiling as the "arbitrary use of the fact that an individual rides a motorcycle or wears motorcycle- related clothing or paraphernalia as a factor in deciding to stop, question, take enforcement action, arrest, or search the individual or his motorcycle or motor vehicle."

AUGUSTA, Maine - Gov. Janet Mills vetoed a bill that would have prohibited the sale in the state of fuel containing more than 10 percent ethanol. In issuing the veto, Mills said E15 (fuel containing as much as 15 percent ethanol by volume) is not currently sold in Maine and "there is insufficient scientific evidence or data to support the claim that it adversely impacts health." Pro-ethanol groups are pushing more gas stations to sell E15, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency plans to start allowing E15 sales year round across the country. Currently, E15 is unavailable in most of the country during the hot summer months.

LANSING, Mich. - On May 21, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson unveiled the awareness campaign "Motorcyclists Are Hard to See. Look Twice. Save a Life." The campaign is aimed at preventing motorcycle crashes in Michigan by teaching people about the importance of constantly looking for motorcycles while driving. The effort will include billboards, radio ads and social media spots. It will be funded through the Motorcycle Safety and Education Fund, which was created by the Michigan Legislature in 2017.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - A bill passed by the legislature would allow motorcyclists 18 or older to ride without a helmet. The bill does require motorcyclists to be covered by a health insurance policy before riding without a helmet.

HARRISBURG, Pa. - State Sen. Camera Bartolotta (R- Monongahela) has introduced legislation prohibiting grass clippings from roadways. She said clippings can cause the surface of the roadway to become extremely slippery, causing motorcycle crashes. Grass on roadways can also clog storm drains and contribute to run-off pollution into streams. Bartolotta's bill would treat offenses related to grass clippings on roadways in the same way as other litter. Fines would range from $50 to $300 for a first offense and $300 to $1,000 for a subsequent offense. Offenders also would be required to remove clippings from the road.

AUSTIN, Texas - A bill to include motorcycles in the state's electric vehicle rebate program failed to make it to the Senate floor. S.B. 486, sponsored by state Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin) would have allowed a rebate of as much as $2,500 for the purchase of an electric motorcycle. The AMA believes this bill was important because it would have ended a discriminatory policy against motorcyclists, who should be eligible for the same benefits as other motor vehicle owners. Ensuring motorcyclists have access to the same rights and programs as the owners of other vehicles is a key part of the AMA mission. Importantly, this bill also recognized motorcycles as part of the future of transportation and something to be encouraged and incentivized for the benefit of all road users.

HANKSVILLE, Utah - After 10 years of extensive monitoring, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management has reopened 5,400 acres in the Factory Butte Special Recreation Management Area to motorized recreation. The Richfield Field Office has rescinded the 2006 Factory Butte OHV travel restriction after meeting criteria to develop a threatened and endangered species monitoring plan and installing infrastructure to protect endangered cactus species. Two OHV areas were subject to temporary travel restrictions until monitoring and infrastructure requirements were in place: Factory Butte (5,300 acres) and Caineville Cove (100 acres). After meeting the criteria, those areas are now available for motorized use. Additionally, riders can continue to enjoy cross-country riding at Factory Butte within the Swing Arm City OHV Play Area (2,602 acres) and more than 200 miles of designated routes in the area.

MONTICELLO, Utah - The U.S. Bureau of Land Management Bears Ears National Monument Advisory Committee will meet in Monticello June 5-6. The draft agenda includes welcoming new committee members, selecting a chair and soliciting members' comments on development of the draft monument management plan and draft environmental impact statement for the Shash Jaa and Indian Creek units of the monument. A public comment period is planned during the meeting, but commenters' time may be limited, depending on how many wish to speak. Anyone interested in bringing related matters to the attention of the committee may also file written statements with the committee staff before or after the meeting. The sessions are 1-5 p.m. June 5 and 8 a.m. to noon June 6 at the Hideout Community Center, 648 Hideout Way. For more information, contact Lisa Bryant, BLM public affairs specialist, at (435) 259-2187 or lmbryant@blm.gov.

Industry News

IRVINE, Calif. - The Motorcycle Safety Foundation and the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute will share information from their motorcyclist behavior studies with autonomous vehicle developers. Data from the MSF 100 Motorcyclists Naturalistic Study will be available to any AV-related company, from vehicle manufacturers to tech companies, through VTTI. In exchange for providing access to the MSF 100, VTTI will ensure that the MSF can use the datasets from AV-related research for its own analysis and published works. The goal is to ensure motorcyclists are included in AV research programs.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Harley-Davidson has closed its factory here, resulting in the loss of 800 jobs. The company said it has been providing support for employee transitions for the past year through a workforce development center, hosting job fairs with more than 100 local employers and offering free employment skills workshops and training. Harley-Davidson said at the time the closure was announced that production from the Kansas City plant would be shifted to the company's plant in York, Pa. The company is completing a $150 million expansion in York, where expects to hire as many as 450 workers to support increased production.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - Fans of motorcycle competition will have all the racing and trials they could ask for at 2019 AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Honda, July 5-7 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. Vintage and post-vintage competition will be held in hare scrambles, motocross, trials, flat track and road racing. Several forms of exhibition racing also are planned. Class winners in the trials, hare scramble, motocross and road racing disciplines will be recognized, and AMA National Champions will receive AMA National No. 1 plates. The flat track race, which takes place at the Ashland County Fairgrounds, is the seventh round of the AMA Vintage Flat Track Series. In addition, two outstanding riders will earn the AMA Off-Road Vintage Grand Championship and the AMA Senior Off-Road Vintage Grand Championship for excelling in expert-level eligible classes. Full details are available at www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer and Hall of Fame Legend Malcolm Smith was presented with the 2019 AMA Dud Perkins Lifetime Achievement Award on May 4 by AMA President and CEO Rob Dingman at The Quail Motorcycle Gathering in Carmel, Calif. Smith gained notoriety for his accomplishments in the Baja 1000 and for his gold-medal-winning rides in the International Six Days Enduro competitions. His fame reached well beyond the motorcycling community when he starred in the influential 1970s motorcycle film, "On Any Sunday." The movie helped launch an explosion in the popularity of off-road motorcycling in America. Smith went on to become a successful businessman with Malcolm Smith Motorsports motorcycle dealership in Riverside, Calif. He also organized numerous fundraising rides in Baja, Mexico, that have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for an orphanage in Valle de la Trinidad, Baja California. Smith was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 1998 and declared a Hall of Fame Legend in 2012. Throughout Smith's storied racing career and subsequent business and philanthropic ventures, he has been an advocate for the AMA mission and its programs.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - The 2019 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Heritage Award, presented at The Quail Motorcycle Gathering in Carmel, Calif., went to a 1970 Jawa 652 "Banana Frame" ISDT owned by Chris Carter, the owner and president of Motion Pro. Carter was an International Six Day Trials rider in the mid-1970s. The ISDT is now known as the FIM International Six Days Enduro. The AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Heritage Award recognizes a model that best represents a contribution or contributions that AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famers have made to the growth of American motorcycling. Read more at https://www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Home/AMA-News-And-Press-Releases/1970-jawa-652-banana-frame-isdt-wins-2019-ama-motorcycle-hall-of-fame-heritage-award-12.

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AMA News & Notes is a monthly publication compiled and edited by the American Motorcyclist Association. Designed to inform motorcyclists of rights-related issues and events in the United States and around the world, AMA News & Notes welcomes your input. Suggestions and editorial contributions can be sent to AMA Managing Editor Jim Witters at jwitters@amacycle.org.

Sign up and stay informed: AMA News & Notes keeps motorcyclists up-to-date on hot topics, news affecting the motorcycling community and opportunities to communicate with elected officials. Click here to check the "Sign me up for News & Notes" box.

AMA Action Alerts notify motorcyclists when and how to make a difference on important issues. Click here to see the most recent AMA Action Alerts, or to sign up and receive them.

Readers also may sign up for other AMA e-newsletters, including Hall of Fame Insider, which focuses on the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. To subscribe, click here.

Protect your right to ride! Volunteering is easy, and it's rewarding. To learn how you can help, visit us online.

Follow the AMA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AmericanMotorcyclist, on Twitter @ama_rights, @ama_riding and @ama_racing and on Instagram at @ama_riding and @ama_racing.


May 2019

 

National and Regional News

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Interior Secretary David Bernhardt signed two secretarial orders in March highlighting the administration's support of outdoor recreation on public lands. Secretarial Order 3373 directs the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to adequately consider public access for outdoor recreation when determining the appropriateness of the disposal or exchange of public lands. "It requires that before the BLM exchanges or disposes of any land, they must first consider what impact the disposal or exchange of land will have on public access," Bernhardt said. The second order, Secretarial Order 3374, establishes a departmental task force to ensure that "the department efficiently and fully implements the most comprehensive public lands management legislation in a decade for the benefit of all Americans," Bernhardt said. "We will continue to work to strike the proper balance for land and resources management, increase opportunities for hunting, fishing, and recreation on Federal lands, create economic prosperity while protecting and preserving America's treasures."

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Office of the United States Trade Representative is once again including some motorcycles among the European goods targeted for tariffs, this time in retaliation for European subsidies to Airbus. Previous tariff proposals were tied to the European nations' restrictions on U.S. beef. The World Trade Organization has found repeatedly that European Union subsidies to Airbus have caused adverse effects to the United States, according to the USTR. Motorcycles between 500cc and 700cc, as well as motorcycle parts and accessories, are on a preliminary list of goods that also includes salmon, cheese, lemons, olive oil, wine, cashmere sweaters, steins and wall clocks. The tariffs would apply to about $11 billion worth of European goods.

YPSILANTI TOWNSHIP, MICH. - The AMA joined ABATE of Michigan, the Motorcycle Riders Foundation and other motorcyclists in March to oppose a plan by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to allow year-round sales of E15 fuel. The AMA opposes the EPA plan because none of the estimated 22 million motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles in use in the United States is approved by the EPA to operate on ethanol blends higher than 10 percent. Allowing more E15 into the marketplace increases the risk of inadvertent misfueling by consumers. Ethanol can cause damage to engines, fuel systems and exhaust components in vehicles not designed for a specific blend. "We urge the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency not to allow gasoline blended with up to 15 percent ethanol to take advantage of the 1-psi Reid Vapor Pressure waiver which would, in turn, allow year-round sales of this fuel," AMA Director of Government Relations Greg Pecoraro said at the hearing. "Despite the EPA's belief that additional misfueling measures are unnecessary and outside the scope of the proposed action, this action would greatly increase the risk of inadvertent misfueling for motorcyclists and all-terrain vehicle owners. This risk alone is sufficient to reconsider this action." The full text of the AMA comments can be found at www.americanmotorcyclist.com.

State News

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Landowners would be spared liability for people legally using their property for off-highway recreation under H.B. 1833, which passed the state Senate and is awaiting the governor's signature. The AMA supports these landowner liability laws, because they remove one obstacle to opening more trails for responsible motorized recreation. The laws allow riders to travel at their own risk.

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - Government agencies have been whittling away at the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area, reducing the useable area from an estimated 15,000 acres to about 1,500 acres. And the California Department of Parks and Recreation fears additional restrictions could close the park. About 300 acres are closed from March through September to protect a bird called the Western Snowy Plover. And the San Luis Obispo Air Pollution Control District wants park officials to reduce dust emissions by half before 2023. The state parks department believes meeting that requirement would mean shutting down another 500 acres. The Friends of Oceano Dunes have brought five lawsuits against the San Luis Obispo Air Pollution Control District to try to halt the new restrictions.

LANSING, Mich. - Off-road vehicle enthusiasts can ride more than 6,300 miles of state forest roads in Michigan's northern Lower Peninsula. That increased opportunity comes after changes approved by Department of Natural Resources Director Dan Eichinger at the February meeting of the Michigan Natural Resources Commission and implemented by DNR forestry staff in the weeks since. Final maps detailing the 6,339.5 miles of northern Michigan state forest roads open to ORV use-as well as printable maps by county-are available on the DNR website.

OAKLAND COUNTY, Mich. - Oakland County will be getting an off-road park in Groveland and Holly townships. The county commissioners OK'd a 20-year operating agreement with the state Department of Natural Resources, with a 10-year additional option. The Oakland County Parks and Recreation will operate the 235-acre park. About 110 acres of the reclaimed mining site will be open for use in summer of 2020. County officials said they have been trying for 20 years to get the project approved.

ALBANY, N.Y. - The New York State Assembly approved congestion pricing in Manhattan, which would include motorcycles in the tolls to be charged to motorists entering the busiest areas. The AMA has been working with the Riders Against Congestion to get an exemption from the tolls for motorcyclists. All road users want to reduce congestion and get where they are going faster. Creating incentives for the use of motorcycles and scooters can reduce congestion and help other road users get where they are going faster. The potential benefits of increased motorcycle and scooter ridership have been studied.  A 2007 traffic model produced by transportation engineering and planning firm Sam Schwartz PLLC simulated the impact of incorporating higher ratios of scooters and motorcycles. Based on those findings, shifting the daytime vehicle mix to 80 percent cars and 20 percent scooters and motorcycles would result in annual reductions in carbon dioxide emissions by more than 26,000 tons, decrease delays by more than 4.6 million hours per year and decrease fuel consumption by more than 2.5 million gallons per year. New York Assembly Member Félix W. Ortiz (D-Kings) has introduced A.B. 6080, which would explicitly exempt all motorcycles from any congestion pricing program fees, wherever such a programs are adopted.

HUGER, S.C. - The AMA is working with South Carolina off-road riders and some riders from surrounding states to protect about 40 miles of trails in the Francis Marion National Forest. As many as 300 riders use the Wambaw Cycle Trail on most weekends. But the U.S. Forest Service is undertaking a 2,600-acre "forest stand conversion" project, which includes taking down trees that shade the trails during the summer months. The logging also will affect use of the trails, with some portions of the trails requiring significant remediation after timbering. About 750 people have responded to an online petition to halt the timber harvest. Contact the AMA at grassroots@ama-cycle.org to help.

Industry News

TOKYO - Honda, Kawasaki, Yamaha and Suzuki will work together to develop swappable battery technology, to further electric motorcycle development. The consortium will tackle the issue of batteries, which has limited the cruising range and, subsequently, the broad appeal and acceptance of electric motorcycles.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame raffle bike winner Lisa Malachowsky of Apex, N.C., picked up her 2017 Ural Gear Up Adventure Together Edition sidecar rig at the AMA campus April 24. Malachowsky was selected as the raffle winner at the 2018 American Honda AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Dec. 7. On hand for the delivery were Corey and Casey Wilkinson of Good Spark Garage in Indianapolis, who helped outfit the special edition Ural. The motorcycle was set up and dialed in by one of the nation's top Ural sales and service dealerships, Heindl Engineering, of Eaton, Ohio. Tickets are currently available for other Hall of Fame raffle bikes, including two customized Nicky Hayden Honda tribute bikes and a 1951 Harley-Davidson FL. All proceeds from the raffles go to the American Motorcycle Heritage Foundation, a nonprofit that raises money for the Hall of Fame. To get your raffle tickets today, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com/hof/Raffle-Bike/hall-of-fame-raffle-bikes.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - The AMA Classic Grand Tour, which provides a fun and interesting way for motorcyclists across the country to get out and ride, returns this year as the AMA celebrates its 95th anniversary. Featured in 2003 and 2009, this popular tour includes a challenge, while allowing riders the flexibility of picking their route and timetable. The goal is to find and photograph signs that contain the letters "AMA" in sequence. The AMA Classic Grand Tour is just one of seven events on the 2019 AMA Grand Tour calendar. For complete information, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com/GrandTours.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - The AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame invites all motorcyclists to its Spring Bike Night, sponsored by Nationwide, from 5 to 8 p.m. May 18 at the AMA campus. The Saturday bike night, sponsored by Nationwide, features an open house at the Hall of Fame museum, which houses the bikes and highlights the achievements of hundreds of Hall of Famers. Music, vendors, activities and more are part of the evening's offerings. On Friday, May 17, KTM will offer street and touring model demo rides departing from the AMA campus from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. On May 18, the demo rides will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., with rides wrapping up prior to the start of the bike night. The KTM truck and motorcycle models will be on display during the Bike Night festivities, with KTM staff members on hand. Information about the demo rides and requirements for going on a test ride can be found at www.ktm.com/us/events/us/ride-orange-street-demo-Columbus.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - AMA member Matteo Mercurio, of Murrieta, Calif., won a 2019 Beta 500RR-S motorcycle, thanks to his participation in the Big Bear Run, a stop on the 2018 Beta AMA National Dual Sport Series, hosted by Big Bear Trail Riders. Mercurio, a four-year AMA member, has been riding dual sports for six years. He also has ridden the LA-Barstow-to-Vegas National Dual Sport, hosted by AMA District 37 Dual Sport. Thanks to sponsors of the Beta AMA National Dual Sport Series, participants who rode at any of the events in the 2018 series were entered automatically to win prizes from Beta, IMS Products, Kenda and Seat Concepts. Adventure Motorcycle Magazine (ADVMoto), also a sponsor of the series, offers a 20 percent discount to a subscription of their magazine. For a complete list of prize winners, visit www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Home/AMA-News-And-Press-Releases/ama-member-wins-beta-motorcycle-after-participating-in-beta-ama-national-dual-sport-series.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Honda, will bring CB750-oriented clubs, restorers and fans to spotlight one of the most important production motorcycles in history. Three-time AMA Grand National Champion and AMA Superbike champion Bubba Shobert will be the grand marshal for the event, which will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Honda's legendary 1969 CB750 and the 40th anniversary of the six-cylinder CBX and the 60th anniversary of American Honda Motor Co.'s presence in the United States. AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days also features vintage competition in road racing, motocross, hare scrambles and trials at Mid-Ohio and flat track racing at the nearby Ashland County Fairgrounds. Riders in these disciplines are racing for national championships or national championship series points. In addition, there will be exhibition pit bike races and dirt drags. The event will include vendors from all areas of motorcycling, selling gear and services for motorcycles old and new. Past vendors have included vintage and modern gear sellers, painters and pinstripers, parts and tools dealers, community garages and much more. For complete details and tickets, visit  www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com. All camping and RV passes, as well as non-AMA member ticket sales, are available now at www.mid-ohio.com.

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AMA News & Notes is a monthly publication compiled and edited by the American Motorcyclist Association. Designed to inform motorcyclists of rights-related issues and events in the United States and around the world, AMA News & Notes welcomes your input. Suggestions and editorial contributions can be sent to AMA Managing Editor Jim Witters at jwitters@amacycle.org.

Sign up and stay informed: AMA News & Notes keeps motorcyclists up-to-date on hot topics, news affecting the motorcycling community and opportunities to communicate with elected officials. Click here to check the "Sign me up for News & Notes" box.

AMA Action Alerts notify motorcyclists when and how to make a difference on important issues. Click here to see the most recent AMA Action Alerts, or to sign up and receive them.

Readers also may sign up for other AMA e-newsletters, including Hall of Fame Insider, which focuses on the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. To subscribe, click here.

Protect your right to ride! Volunteering is easy, and it's rewarding. To learn how you can help, visit us online.

Follow the AMA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AmericanMotorcyclist, on Twitter @ama_rights, @ama_riding and @ama_racing and on Instagram at @ama_riding and @ama_racing.


April 2019

 

National and Regional News

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released its proposed rule that lifts the summertime ban on higher-ethanol blends of gasoline, particularly E15, which contains 50 percent more ethanol than the common E10. A ban on E15 has been in place during warmer months across most of the country, because the EPA determined it contributes to smog in hot weather. The AMA opposes the increased availability of E15, because use of the fuel is illegal in motorcycles and ATVs, none of which are certified by the EPA to operate on fuel blends containing more than 10 percent ethanol. Studies show that consumers shop for fuel by price, raising concerns that motorcyclists will inadvertently pump the cheaper E15 blends into their vehicles. Ethanol can cause damage to engines, fuel systems and exhaust components in vehicles not designed for a specific blend.     At the same time, the ethanol industry launched an E15 marketing campaign that adds confusion to the issue. Growth Energy, an ethanol marketing organization, began promoting E15 as Unleaded 88 in an effort to help retailers sell more of the fuel blend. So far, Sheetz, Kwik Trip, Protec Fuels, Kum & Go, Minnoco, and Family Express have signed on. In a press release about the campaign, Growth Energy stated, "Unleaded 88 communicates the octane of the fuel in the way consumers are used to seeing it." But by emphasizing octane rating over ethanol content, this campaign could easily mislead consumers into filling their fuel tanks with a harmful mixture for their vehicles.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - President Donald Trump signed S.47, the omnibus public lands bill that designates more than 1 million acres of Wilderness and permanently reauthorizes a federal program to pay for conservation measures. The bill designates 1.3 million acres in Utah, New Mexico, Oregon and California as Wilderness, the most stringent level of federal land protection. The designation prohibits any development and bans the use of most motorized vehicles. The Utah portion of the bill includes the loss of 72 miles of roads and access for OHV enthusiasts in Emery County. The AMA opposed the Emery County bill and lobbied alongside Utah riders for it to be considered separately. However, the Utah congressional delegation and county commissioners in the state supported the bill. The bill signed by the president also:

  • Adds six wilderness areas in Death Valley National Park and releases six wilderness study areas, which can now be considered for recreational uses;
  • Creates Vinagre Wash Special Management Area in California's Imperial County, Calif.;
  • Allows motorized travel on currently approved routes;
  • Designates a three-year period for the public to lobby the Interior Secretary for new motorized routes;
  • Provides Off Highway Vehicle Recreation Area designation to five areas currently used for OHV recreation in San Bernardino County managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management;
  • Expands the Johnson Valley Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Area in California by 20,240 acres.
  • Creates 18 wilderness areas, totaling more than 600,000 acres;
  • Creates the 216,995-acre San Rafael Swell Recreation area managed by BLM, which allows motorized use;
  • Creates a seven-member federal advisory board, with only one member from the motorized community; and
  • Allows repairs to existing motorized routes or rerouting of existing routes for public safety or to protect resources.

State News

PLACERVILLE, Calif. -The seasonal closure of native dirt roads and motorized trails in the Eldorado National Forest has been extended to April 15. Rainfall, soil moisture, road and trail conditions, and weather forecasts are factors that trigger extending the seasonal closure beyond March 31. The seasonal closure is designed to protect roadbeds and watersheds from damage and to protect water quality. The seasonal closure does not affect routes in the Rock Creek Area near Georgetown, which has its own wet weather route closure process.

DENVER - Colorado's "Volunteer Service Act," which would provide liability protection for agencies and organizations using volunteer labor for work on public lands has passed the state House and Senate. Backed by the AMA and the Colorado Off-Highway Vehicle Coalition, the act strengthens the legal protections under the federal "Volunteer Protection Act of 1997" and covers individual volunteers and nonprofit groups who build or maintain recreational trails and related facilities pursuant to grants received under Colorado's "Recreational Trails System Act of 1971." Groups previously had difficulty securing adequate liability insurance and completing the work within the timeframes outlined in their grant awards.

THOMASTON, Conn. - More than 150 dirt bike riders showed up to voice their concern over a proposal that could disrupt riding at Thomaston Dam, the state's only riding area. Steve Salisbury of the AMA and representatives of the New England Trail Rider Association were among those urging planners to situate a segment of the planned Naugatuck River Greenway Trail on the east side of the Naugatuck River, leaving the riding trails undisturbed.

MANCHESTER, Iowa - The Delaware County Roads-to-Trails ATV/UTV Club has received a $5,000 grant from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources for the creation of an ATV riding area in a Delaware County park. The club is partnering with the Delaware County Board of Supervisors and the Delaware County Conservation Board. The grant is expected to pay for a professional designer who would develop a trail in either Turtle Creek Park or Fountain Springs Park.

COLEBROOK, N.H. - Voters in three New Hampshire towns defeated or delayed petitions calling for a ban on ATVs on town roads. The Union Leader reported that Colebrook voters rejected the ban, 227-52. Pittsburg defeated it 166-54. And Stewartstown voted 92-26 to table the matter. Chamber of Commerce officials believe ATV riders provide a boost to the local economies. But some residents object to the presence of ATVs on town roads, particularly near the Ride The Wilds system, which provides 1,000 miles of trails for motorized use. In Gorham, people who live near a Ride The Wilds trailhead sued the state and town to move or remove it, citing noise, fumes and dirt that they say reduce property values and affect their quality of life, the Union Leader reported. ATV supporters said people using the trail system have contributed greatly to state revenue and that the value of property along the trails have increased significantly since Ride The Wilds opened in 2013. Several towns allow riders to use public streets to access fuel, food and services.

ALBANY, N.Y. - Assembly Member Félix W. Ortiz (D-Kings) introduced A.B. 6080, which would exempt all motorcycles from congestion pricing program fees, if such a program is adopted. Current and past congestion pricing proposals for New York City would have charged motorcycles the same amounts as cars and trucks. The AMA is urging New York riders to write to their New York State Assembly members in support of this commonsense legislation that recognizes the benefits of motorcycling for city traffic. At the same time, state leaders are ironing out the details on a congestion pricing plan for Manhattan. The New York Times reported that "The proceeds from congestion pricing are expected to enable the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which operates the city's public transit network, to raise billions of dollars in bonds to modernize the antiquated subway."

HARRISBURG, Pa. - The state House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation to toughen penalties for driving a motorcycle without the proper license. H.B. 384 would increase the fine from $25 to $200, plus fees and surcharges. Bill sponsor, state Rep. Josh Kail (R-Beaver/Washington), said the state has large numbers of riders operating motorcycles and other vehicles without the proper license, posing a danger to the rider and other motorists and pedestrians. Kail said his legislation would bring the penalty more in line with the seriousness of the violation.

AUSTIN, Texas - Mike Sayre, AMA government affairs manager for on-highway issues, gave a presentation at the Texas Motorcycle Safety Forum in March. His discussion focused on the federal Motorcyclist Advisory Council, which he chairs. As directed by Congress, the MAC's task is to provide advice and recommendations concerning infrastructure issues related to motorcyclist safety to the Federal Highway Administration. Sayre also met with AMA State Chapter coordinator Jude Schexnyder and discussed issues facing Texas motorcyclists.

SALT LAKE CITY - The Utah State Legislature approved a $5 million appropriation in the state budget to help restore the Bonneville Salt Flats, home of the AMA Land Speed Grand Championship. The 10-year restoration project is estimated to cost about $50 million, with most of the total coming from the federal government. The motorsports community also will contribute. The AMA, as part of the Save the Salt Coalition, has been urging local, state and federal officials to restore the Bonneville Salt Flats, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. The coalition will now focus on ensuring that funding and commitments come from Congress and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

SALT LAKE CITY - Utah became the second U.S. state to formally recognize a type of lane splitting, with the governor's signature on a bill legalizing the filtering of motorcycles between lanes of stopped traffic. H.B. 149 allows motorcyclists traveling no faster than 15 mph to filter between lanes of stopped traffic traveling in the same direction on roads where the speed limit is 45 mph or less. The bill, sponsored by state Rep. Walt Brooks (R-St. George) and state Sen. David P. Hinkins (R-Orangeville), was signed by Gov. Gary Herbert on March 21. The bill takes effect May 14. There are provisions in the bill automatically repealing the law on July 1, 2022, if the legislature takes no action to extend it.

RICHMOND, Va. - The state Senate and House of Delegates passed bills prohibiting motorists from touching their cellphones while driving. The bills would allow use of hands-free mode. State law currently prohibits only reading email or text messages or manually entering letters or text in a hand-held personal communications device while driving. Drivers would still be able to operate their phones while they are parked or stopped or while reporting an emergency.

OLYMPIA, Wash. - The Washington Recreation and Conservation Office asks that statewide recreational user groups and stakeholders complete a brief survey as part of the agency's efforts to study recreational assets of statewide significance. The study is at https://rco.wa.gov/doc_pages/RASS-Study.shtml. In May and June, the agency plans to reach out to a wider group of recreation stakeholders to include federal, state and local agencies and tribes and some regional organizations. Also, the RCO plans to post maps and reports and ask the public to comment on them.

JACKSON, Wyo. - Forty-four miles of officially recognized motorized trails are planned for the Salt River Range in Wyoming to replace a series of illegal roads and trails used by the OHV community. Officials of the Bridger-Teton National Forest agreed to provide 26 miles of new trails for side-by-sides, 14 miles for dirt bikes and 4 miles for any vehicles. The routes will be closed Dec. 1 to June 30 each year to protect elk habitat during calving and fawning seasons. The new motorized trails and roads will be built in cooperation with the Wyoming Trails Program.

Industry News

LOS ANGELES - The Petersen Museum, the Motorcycle Arts Foundation and Harley-Davidson are opening an all-electric motorcycle exhibition April 4. The motorcycle exhibit, part of Petersen's "Electric Revolution," is a response to the rapid expansion of the electric-vehicle market. "E-bikes are the hottest sector of new-tech transportation, as dozens of small, tech-oriented companies vie for the top spots in a wide-open field," according to a Petersen Museum press release. "'Electric Revolution' will explore the history and current state of the electric industry, seen through the handiwork of both visionary home-builders and established manufacturers, with ultra-stylish contemporary designs that point the way to the future."

NEW YORK - AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Erik Buell has launched a new brand, Fuell, that offers electric bicycles and motorcycles. Fuell plans to begin accepting orders in April at its website (https://fuell.us). Delivery of the Fluid e-bike is planned later this year. The Flow electric motorcycle will have first deliveries in early 2021. Buell, a former Harley-Davidson engineer, founded Buell Motorcycle Company in 1983. It merged with Harley-Davidson in 1993 and Harley produced Buell-branded motorcycles until 2009. Buell also worked with Schwinn in the 1990s to develop full-suspension mountain bikes. Buell's partners in Fuell are Frederic Vasseur, a French motorsport engineer and team manager, and François-Xavier Terny, a French entrepreneur and investor.

MILWAUKEE - Harley-Davidson Inc. has bought StaCyc Inc., the producer of the 12 and 16 Edrive electric two-wheelers for children. Harley-Davidson previously announced plans to launch its LiveWire electric motorcycle in fall of 2019 and future lightweight and middleweight electric motorcycles starting in 2021. The company said StaCyc electric two-wheelers will provide an entry point for the youngest riders.

AMA News

PICKERINGTON, Ohio -AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Arlen Ness passed away on March 22 at age 79. He is best known for his innovative and wild custom motorcycle designs and custom parts business, and often was called "The King of Custom Motorcycles." Ness' custom bikes were known for their low-slung, stretched-out look. His trendsetting designs have been studied and copied by other bike builders and factory engineers. He was among the first people in the motorcycle industry to recognize the value of CNC machining technology in the production of aftermarket motorcycle parts. Ness was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 1992. In 2008, the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame honored Ness' contributions to motorcycling with "Awesome-Ness," an exhibit that featured memorabilia and motorcycles, including "Untouchable" and 10 other custom motorcycles from Ness' personal collection.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio - Three-time AMA Grand National Champion and AMA Superbike champion Bubba Shobert will be the Grand Marshal of this year's AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Honda, on July 5-7, 2019 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. As a longtime factory Honda rider and one of the winningest racers in professional motorcycle competition, Shobert is an ideal choice for this year's AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Honda, which will not only celebrate the 50th anniversary of Honda's legendary 1969 CB750 but also the 40th anniversary of the six-cylinder CBX and the 60th anniversary of American Honda Motor Co.'s presence in the United States. On hand to thrill race fans will be Shobert's factory Honda RS750, owned by American Honda, and his 1988 VFR750 championship-winning Superbike, owned by Superbike collector extraordinaire Brian O'Shea. Weather permitting, Shobert will ride the VFR750 around the road race course as he leads the Lap for History-a ride that fans can participate in with a small donation to the Hall of Fame. In addition to the RS750, American Honda will be on hand with a variety of classic and new-bike displays, all of which will highlight the company's significance to American motorcycling, particularly the advent in 1969 of the legendary CB750 Four. Expect CB750-oriented clubs, restorers and fans to help highlight possibly the most important production motorcycle in history. AMA members can purchase discounted tickets now at www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com. All camping and RV passes, as well as non-AMA member ticket sales, are available now at www.mid-ohio.com.

* * * * *

AMA News & Notes is a monthly publication compiled and edited by the American Motorcyclist Association. Designed to inform motorcyclists of rights-related issues and events in the United States and around the world, AMA News & Notes welcomes your input. Suggestions and editorial contributions can be sent to AMA Managing Editor Jim Witters at jwitters@amacycle.org.

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Readers also may sign up for other AMA e-newsletters, including Hall of Fame Insider, which focuses on the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame. To subscribe, click here.

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Follow the AMA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AmericanMotorcyclist, on Twitter @ama_rights, @ama_riding and @ama_racing and on Instagram at @ama_riding and @ama_racing.


Oppose proposed year-round sales of E15

Year-round sales of E15 would increase the risk of misfueling

 

On March, 12, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced it would makes regulatory changes to allow year-round sales of E15 fuel, a blend of gasoline that is 15 percent ethanol by volume, by waiving Clean Air Act requirements related to Reid Vapor Pressure. This action would put the owners of millions of motorcycles and ATVs at significant risk because the dangers of this fuel are not clearly identified at the pump, E15 can cause engine and fuel system damage to machines not designed for its use and use of E15 may void the manufacturers' warranty.

The American Motorcyclist Association opposes the proposed change and we are urging you to take advantage of the public comment period for this regulatory change and tell the EPA to reconsider this move and protect American motorcyclists from this unsafe fuel.

Take Action

In addition to the public comment period the EPA is hosting a public hearing on March 29th in Ypsilanti, Mi.

None of the estimated 22 million motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles in use in the United States is approved by the EPA to use E15 or higher ethanol blends. Not only does using E15 in motorcycles and ATVs violate federal law, it can cause engine and fuel system damage and may void the manufacturers' warranty.

In addition, the AMA is concerned that expanding the sale of E15 fuel will significantly decrease the availability of E0, fuel with no ethanol that is needed for older and vintage machines.

The rush to force more E15 fuel into the marketplace by the ethanol industry greatly increases the chances of inadvertent misfueling by motorcyclists and ATV owners-as well as owners of boats, small engines and other machines that are not warrantied for E15 use-due to blender pumps, confusing pump labeling and the lack of any significant consumer education by the ethanol industry or the federal government.

Thank you in advance for taking action on this important issue for motorcyclists.

Take Action


Ask your representative to support America's scenic byways

National Scenic Byway Program preserves some of motorcyclists' favorite roads

Please urge your representative to support H.R. 5158, which would direct the Secretary of Transportation to reopen nominations for the National Scenic Byways Program, which has been closed for six years.

The American Motorcyclist Association was part of the coalition that helped created this program in 1991 and is part of a group now hoping to revive the program. Many of the country's favorite motorcycling roads are National Scenic Byways and benefit from the resources provided to preserve and enhance them.

From the Blue Ridge Parkway, stretching from North Carolina to Virginia, to Beartooth Highway, running between Montana and Wyoming, to Hells Canyon in Oregon, there are 150 designated National Scenic Byways. The program provides resources that help communities along these byways benefit from the tourism they generate, while preserving the characteristics of the roads that made them destinations in the first place.

According to a recent survey, there are 44 state scenic byways in 23 states that are prepared to seek designation as National Scenic Byways if this legislation passes and the nomination process is reopened. The Federal Highway Administration has stated that reopening this program would not require any additional funding-it simply requires approval from Congress!

Thank you in advance for contacting your representative on this important issue.

Take Action


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