Another Legislative Update and Action Alert

Today is a double landmark day.

First landmark:  We have bills that have cleared one more hurdle to get to the floor for final passage.  The next step is what is called “second reading.”  This is where the bill can be debated and amended.  After that it moves to the “third reading” where is can only be voted on, yes or no, for final passage.

Out of HB 1328 and SB 5185, AKA the “Parade Bill,”  the house version (HB 1328) has been made eligible for the second reading calendar.  The senate is proposing adding the ability to get specialty plates, such as Purple Heart, to the underlying bill.  The bottom line is that people in a parade should not have to ask permission from WSP to make helmet usage optional.  Riding in parade formation without a helmet is much less hazardous than standing on a flat bed truck at the same speed.

SB 5242, AKA the “Profiling Bill,”  has been moved to the second reading calendar in the house.  This bill has a lot of support in the house, but we still need to get our voices heard.

SB 5800 has been moved to the second reading calendar in the house.  To reprise my report from the other day, this bill provides an avenue for those riders who have off road only motorcycles to bring them into compliance with all of the federal motor vehicle safety standards so that they can license them so that they can use them on road.  This way they can go from trail to trail or from trailhead to town and back without loading up and trailering.  It isn’t a traditional “road” issue, but many of our members ride on and off road, so this can have an effect on them.

There is still some work to do on the rest of our bills.  They may not be as glamourous as the above bills, but they need to get some buzz too.  This is especially important to people who have a great interest in the rider training program, so I really need all the rider coaches out there to grab the phone and call your reps.

HB 1543 and SB 5141.  We need to get one or both of these bills to the floor for action.  These two bills both eliminate the loophole where riders get an inordinate number of learners permits without bothering to get endorsed.  IMHO the Senate version would be preferable, as it sets the standard as 3 permits in five years as opposed to capping lifetime permits at 3.  The Senate is proposing to restore the 3 in a lifetime language.  Either one does the job, but SB 5141 gives a bit more leeway for the rider who is re-entering the market after several years absence.

HB 1833.  If you want to keep our regular access to the DOL in place put this one on the shopping list to push.  This bill ensures that the Motorcycle Safety and Education Advisory Board meets no less than quarterly, th ensure that we have a continuing venue for access to the agency that safeguards our funds.  This is the only surviving version of the bill, so the choice is easy.

We definitely need to start clogging the switchboards in Olympia.  Even if some of the issues do not really make you want to run down the street screaming in glee we need to demonstrate a united front for the mundane issues too.  There is credibility in numbers.  It’s a “pay it forward” type of thing; showing up for the mundane today garners us even more respect, respect that can be parleyed into legislative clout at a later date.

Let’s see if we can get some legislators to contact me with a plea to call off the dogs with a promise of support.

That will be a great landmark.

Oh, you ask, what is the other landmark I mentioned 643 words ago?

As I compose this there is a Major League Baseball regulation game in progress.  It reminds me that we are getting closer to the “Bikers in the Ballpark” event.  Look to your right on the WRRA web page, follow the link, and get hooked up with a piece of motorcycling history.

Yes, campers, it is opening day, and the universe is more in alignment.

Until next time, Ride Safely and Legislate Well…………………….and see you at the ballpark.  ;-)

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