Legislative Update - February 2018
(ABATE) of Arizona is a not-for-profit organization that is interested in citizen’s rights as they apply to motorcyclists in particular, as well as all citizens. ABATE is the largest Motorcycle Rights Organization in Arizona. The members of ABATE of Arizona include; Attorneys, Ministers, Teachers, Law Enforcement Officers, Nurses, Construction Workers, Commercial Drivers, Business Owners, Legislators, and many more.
- 1992 Opened HOV lanes to motorcyclists
- 1997 Helped prevent mandatory helmet legislation
- 2001 Established the Motorcycle Safety Fund
- 2002 Established Arizona Motorcycle Safety Council
- 2004 Established veteran plates for motorcycles
- 2007 Eliminated yearly emissions testing for motorcycles in Pima county. Removed the cap on the Motorcycle Safety Fund.
- 2013 Eliminated yearly emissions testing for motorcycles in Maricopa County
- 2015 Eliminated restriction on handlebar height
- 2017 Reestablished Motorcycle Safety Fund for 5 years. Lobbied for the Teen Texting Bill. Lobbied for the Civil Forfeiture changes.
We launched a 4 R’s focus last year.
- Ride Safe. Always have an out and wear proper riding gear.
- Ride Smart. Be a lifelong learner. Take a rider’s safety course. Practice skills.
- Ride Responsible. Know your limits. Don’t ride impaired.
- Ride Endorsed. Get your motorcycle license. Encourage your friends and family to as well.
Our agenda for this 2018 session of the legislature is three-fold. First, we are again seeking to ensure that motorcyclists have ability to ride the beautiful roads in Arizona without the worry of being killed by automobile drivers. Secondly; we will be using our efforts to pass a reasonable version of a lane splitting bill, to reduce traffic congestion and increase the safety of motorcyclists traveling on the roadways within Arizona without a mandatory helmet stipulation. Thirdly; ABATE of Arizona is open to assist other organizations in a unified community effort as requested to support other motorcycle legislation our membership deems appropriate.
I also want to announce that as the ABATE lobbyist, I will be launching a first for a motorcycle rights organization in our country. This will be my main focus as we attempt to get sensible legislation passed to help keep us alive. Because bikers lives matter.
From 2010 through 2016, 911 people lost their lives in motorcycle crashes in Arizona. We have to ask ourselves: How many deaths and serious injuries are “acceptable” on Arizona’s roadways? How many of your family members would it be “acceptable” to lose to motorcycle crashes each year? Ten? Five?
Of course, the answer is none. Zero. The goal of every Arizona citizen should be zero deaths and serious injuries on our roads and highways. The personal, financial, and societal loss for every person killed or injured in traffic crashes is enormous. The loss of even one family member, co-worker, or friend is unacceptable.
This is called PROJECT ZERO:
A goal of zero motorcycle fatalities in Arizona by 2025.
This can only be accomplished by setting some intermediate goals.
- All motorcyclists in Arizona to be an endorsed rider
- Increased Safety and Awareness campaigns
- Zero incidents of wrong way drivers on freeways
- Reduce DUI incidents by motorcyclists to 0 and overall by 50%
- Zero incidents of motorcycle profiling
- Motorcycle Awareness Program (MAP) available in 20 more high schools over the next 5 years
I am challenging all of our elected officials to come on board with us to accomplish this goal.
I also want to extend an invitation to all of our elected officials to become an endorsed motorcycle rider. Even if they will never ride a motorcycle themselves, at least attend a motorcycle safety course to understand the particulars of what it takes to navigate the roads.
The Motorcycle Safety Fund through the Governors office of Highway Safety issues grant funding that allows AMSAF to scholarship these courses. They are open to anyone.
ABATE will lead from the front on keeping motorcyclists safe and free in Arizona.
One legislator that has fought for motorcyclists at the Copper Dome in BOTH houses is Senator Karen Fann. Senator Fann represents the citizens of LD1. This past year she has went above and beyond for ALL Arizona motorcyclists. Not only sponsoring common sense legislation, but advocating on the floor of the Senate and in committee meetings on issues she did not have a stake in. She is one elected official who honestly fights for her constituents. With that said, ABATE of Arizona named Senator Karen Fann our Freedom Fighter of the Year for 2017. This vest was donated by Renegade Classics in Phoenix as well as the custom patches on it. Thank you, Senator, for being a friend of Arizona motorcyclists.
Freedom is a team sport!
ABATE of Arizona
State Designated Lobbyist