Highway Bill Amendments Beneficial for Off-Road Riders

Lucas Cooney
by Lucas Cooney
Bill included continued funding for Recreational Trails Program

According to the American Motorcyclist Association, the U.S. House of Representatives adopted amendments to the federal Highway Bill that includes good news for ATV and UTV riders, as well as motorcyclists.

The Surface Transportation Reauthorization and Reform Act of 2015 was approved by a vote of 363 to 64 and provides $325 billion over six years.

“We sifted through more than 100 amendments to this bill, identified those favorable to AMA members and threw our support behind them,” said Wayne Allard, AMA vice president for government relations. “At the same time, we staunchly opposed proposed amendments, such as those that would have eliminated the Recreational Trails Program.”

Amendments and other provisions passed by the House and supported by the AMA include:

  • Continued funding for the Recreational Trails Program which provides funding to states for maintaining, improving and expanding off-highway recreational opportunities.
  • A prohibition against using federal funds for motorcycle-only checkpoints.
  • Re-establishing a Motorcycle Advisory Council to coordinate with and counsel the U.S. Department of Transportation administrator on infrastructure concerns of particular interest to motorcyclists.
  • Authorization for a study to be performed by the National Academies of Science on ways to prevent crashes.
  • Funding of highway safety grants that include programs to reduce distracted driving, including language that make it easier for states to successfully qualify for and receive the money.

The Highway Bill now goes to conference committee, where differences between the Senate and House versions will be worked out.

Lucas Cooney
Lucas Cooney

I have been working exclusively in digital media since 1997. I started out with TSN.ca, spending nearly nine years creating and editing content on Canada's leading sports website. I left to join VerticalScope, Inc., one of the world's largest online publishers, to start a number of powersports publications. While at VerticalScope, I've helped create and oversee content for a wide variety of different publications, including ATV.com, Off-Road.com, ArcheryTalk.com, Tractor.com, RVGuide.com, and many more.

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