2018 Idaho Legislative Update
The Idaho Coalition for Motorcycle Safety kept watch on all bills related to motorcycling and motorcycle transportation, safety, and rights issues. There were no bills introduced that put any of our core principals into jeopardy. We continue to be among the more fortunate states in the nation for favorable laws regarding motorcycling. In our 33 years of existence, the ICMS has played a major role in preserving, protecting, and enhancing our laws and way of life. Here are some bills of interest that we monitored during the 2018 session.
House Bill 439 never left committee It called for making the option of a 6-month registration for motorcycles available. As written, the bill would have simply allowed a motorcycle owner to register a motorcycle for a 6-month period of their choosing. ICMS had many questions regarding this bill and will seek answers if it should return next year.
House Bill 512 passed and will go into effect on July 1, 2018. It increases the fee for those taking a motorcycle skills test from $10 to not more than $25. The fee increase will not go to the state but will be paid to the tester. This seems reasonable compensation for testers considering travel and time spent on the test range and doing paperwork.
House Bill 508 never left committee. It would have allowed an electric motor-powered bicycle to be used in certain areas such as greenbelt paths. The text of the bill clearly separated it from the definition of a motorcycle.
House Bill 389 would have eliminated the requirement for two different speed limits in Idaho. This bill would have effectively let trucks travel at the same speed as all other vehicles. ICMS was neutral on this bill and it never left committee.
House Bill 471 passed. Starting July 1, 2018 it will be unlawful to impede traffic in the left lane of controlled access highways. A vehicle must pass other vehicles and then return to a lane other than the left one so as not to block other drivers from traveling the posted speed limit.
Senate Bill 1283 would have made it an infraction punishable by fine to use a mobile electronic device by hand while operating a motor vehicle. Mobile electronic devices were defined within the bill as are the fines for violating the code. Hands free use would have been permitted as well as map functions and emergency calls. We motorcyclists have long been frustrated by the use of cell phones by drivers. If it had passed, this bill might well have curtailed such activities. The bill was defeated on the Senate floor by a vote of 22-13. One Senator said it was obvious that our citizens did not want this bill because there are so many drivers using phones at any given time.
House Bill 499 has passed and will also become effective on July 1. 2018. Section 31-81, Idaho Code, requires counties to retain all records, including digital files of video and audio recordings from body worn cameras, for a minimum of two years. Given the cost associated with management and storage of the digital media files associated with body worn cameras, many counties are currently unable to retain digital media recordings for the minimum requirement of two years. This legislation will add language to define digital recordings and a set minimum retention requirement for specified digital media files based upon the evidentiary value of the digital media file. These amendments will encourage counties to invest in digital recording devices by making the retention of county law enforcement records more achievable under county budgets. ICMS hopes that this does not provide an excuse for the destruction of files related to motorcyclist profiling issues.
House Bill 421 would have required peace officers who use laser devices or radar to retain a visual display of the measured speed throughout the duration of the traffic stop. This bill never left committee.
HB 123 Voted down on the Senate Floor
No Profiling Law in Idaho This Year
A great effort by the motorcycling community was made this year to institute a motorcycle profiling law in the Idaho State Legislature. It was introduced in the House of Representatives as HB123 and passed unanimously with 69 Ayes, 0 Nays and 1 Absent. However, on the Senate floor the bill failed with 13 Ayes, 22 Nays and 0 absent.
Arguments against the bill stated that many law enforcement entities have been contacted and no complaints of profiling have been filed. Senator Foreman District 5 stated “I took some time, made the rounds, talked to a number of senior law enforcement officials in the area, they’re not aware of a multitude of complaints about this topic. People aren’t coming in and expressing their concerns. I’ve talked to rank and file patrol officers as well, again they’re not aware of all these complaints.” Senator Foreman also stated “As a former law enforcement officer, I am insulted by this bill.” Senator Lodge District 11 stated “I’ve checked with the State Police, the Canyon County Sheriff, Meridian, Boise Chief’s, Twin Falls Chief’s and I’ve talked to others, and they have no filed complaints from motorcyclists of profiling.” Senator Lodge also stated “Even the leaders of the motorcycle group could not give me information on complaints being filed about being profiled in Idaho.” Lodge also stated “We do not profile in Idaho.” Senator Bair District 31 read a letter from Sheriff Craig Rowland. “My thoughts on this bill of past are these. A person who is stopped for probable cause, who is a motorcycle gang member wearing colors, are going to take us to court and cite this profiling law. We already have a hard enough time to do our jobs without the legislature making the law like this.”
Other arguments against the bill were that this bill should apply to all people within Idaho, not to the select few that choose to ride motorcycles. Senator Burgoyne District 16 made a motion to amend HB123 to the 14th Order but that motion did not gain enough votes to carry.
Arguments for the bill did, in fact, help the case that there is profiling present within law enforcement entities. Senator Agenbroad District 13 opened with “I’ve spoken with several friends in law enforcement who stated hearance to this definition is consistent with patrol best practices. They agree that profiling is not an acceptable practice. While they’re many examples of what we’re talking about, this bill is about the future, not about the past. The goal today is to take a step toward improving the relationship between law enforcement and the motorcycle community. This bill can serve as a training marker between the two communities to improve relations. In fact, this bill has already started the conversations. The division administrator at POST, Victor McCraw has extended an invitation to the motorcycle community, to provide motorcycles and people to assist POST at their facility while profiling training.” Senator Rice District 10 referred to an incident where a vehicle with Oregon State license plates that read KRONIK. “The Police report stated that the reason for pulling the vehicle over was the license plate said KRONIK.” Senator Davis District 33 related to an incident where he believed he had been profiled, because the vehicle he was driving had Senate issued license plates. Senator Davis did not recollect whether a formal complaint had been filed with the police department. Senator Buckner-Webb District 19 argued “My concern is, one of the justifications was many police departments have no reporting that profiling has occurred, well I must share with you that oftentimes of one down or targeted population or population that feels targeted does not feel safe to report it or feel that it will be heard.”
Below is the roll call of votes taken from http://lso.legislature.idaho.gov/MediaPub/2017/Chambers/SenateDailyJournal03-15-2017.pdf page 5
Roll call resulted as follows:
AYES–Agenbroad, Anthon, Bayer, Brackett, Buckner-Webb, Crabtree, Den Hartog, Guthrie, Hagedorn, Heider, Lee, Martin, Nonini. Total - 13.
NAYS–Bair, Burgoyne, Davis, Foreman, Harris, Hill, Johnson, Jordan, Keough, Lakey, Lodge, Mortimer, Nye, Patrick, Rice, Siddoway, Souza, Stennett, Thayn, Vick, Ward-Engelking, Winder. Total - 22.
Paired and voting included in roll call: AYE - Brackett NAY - Vick
Total - 35.
Senate kills anti-motorcycle profiling bill,
Anti-motorcycle profiling bill clears Senate
panel, heads to full Senate
Motorcycle Profiling in Idaho
As the “Two Wheel Advocate” goes to press a motorcycle profiling bill is advancing through the legislature. This bill, brought forward by ABATE, passed the House Judiciary Committee unanimously and on February 27 passed the House with a floor vote of 69-0-1. The bill was introduced by District 12 Representative Robert Anderst who then carried it to the floor. David Devereaux of Washington State, the leading proponent of the “Motorcycle Profiling Project”, as well as ICMS Government Affairs Officer, Lane Triplett, spoke in favor of the bill in committee.
All who spoke made it clear that this is not an attack on law enforcement. There are but a few that practice profiling. All peace officers take an oath promising not to take part in such activities. This proposed law reiterates the oath.
As HB 123 moves on to the Senate Judiciary and Rules committee, the hearing room is expected to again be filled with leather clad motorcyclists as it was in the House committee. It seems promising that this practice will soon be ended. If passed, Idaho will become the third state in the nation to do so. Kudos to the hard work of ABATE.
The following is the full bill text:
HOUSE BILL NO. 123
BYJUDICIARY, RULES AND ADMINISTRATION COMMITTEE
RELATING TO MOTORCYCLES; AMENDING CHAPTER 14, TITLE 49, IDAHO CODE, BY THE
ADDITION OF A NEW SECTION 49-1431, IDAHO CODE, TO PROVIDE THAT LAW EN- FORCEMENT SHALL NOT ENGAGE IN MOTORCYCLE PROFILING AND TO DEFINE A TERM.
Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Idaho:
SECTION 1. That Chapter 14, Title 49, Idaho Code, be, and the same is hereby amended by the addition thereto of a NEW SECTION, to be known and designated as Section 49-1431, Idaho Code, and to read as follows:
49-1431. MOTORCYCLE PROFILING. (1) No state or local law enforcement agent or law enforcement agency shall engage in motorcycle profiling.
(2) For purposes of this section, "motorcycle profiling" means the arbitrary use of the fact that a person rides a motorcycle or wears motorcycle-related paraphernalia as a factor in deciding to stop and question, take enforcement action, arrest or search a person or vehicle under the constitution of the United States or the constitution of the state of Idaho.
Idaho House panel unanimously backs
‘motorcycle profiling’ bill
Passing 15 MPH faster than Posted Speed
House Bill 132
Motorcycle Profiling House Bill 123
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