NC Biker Lobby Day 2-7-07

Freedom Fighters Converge on Raleigh
By Vinny Neuman

On Wednesday, February 7, 2007 over 100 bikers from across North Carolina converged on Raleigh, North Carolina for a State Lobby Day at the NC General Assembly. The purpose of this lobby day was for North Carolina bikers to show their elected officials that they care enough about the future of motorcycling to take the day off from work and travel to Raleigh in freezing February temperatures to voice their opinions.

Legislative packets were created by volunteers from the Concerned Bikers Association of NC. Biker constituents personally delivered the packets to their legislators to show they are serious about getting their legislation passed.

There were eight different issues that bikers discussed with their elected officials on that day. Issues ranged from lobbying for state funding of motorcycle safety programs, to passing a law allowing bikers to turn left if a traffic light detector does not recognize a motorcycle. These seven issues are a summarized list of issues that effect North Carolina bikers.

If you could not attend the State Lobby Day, there are still actions you can take to help move your cause forward. Join a local CBA/ABATE chapter and work with your Chapter Legislative Coordinator to find out who represents you. The Chapter LC will also coach you on how our government is structured and how it functions.

If you are “not a joiner”, do it yourself without our help. But please DO IT. If you would like to support an organization completely dedicated to furthering the rights of bikers in NC, join up today. ( )

Don’t just sit there and tell yourself that these issues do not affect you. Maybe one or two of them doesn’t affect you. However, most of these issues DO affect you and you should be getting involved in solving some of these problems. If you are not a member of a state motorcyclists’ rights organization (SMRO), then you are probably not doing anything to protect your biker freedoms and not doing anything to help resolve issues that are a detriment to all riders here in North Carolina.

Here is another less-known fact that you may not have thought about. Lobbying in Raleigh with 100 other bikers is FUN. Several members of my local CBA chapter and I jumped on our bikes in clear weather and rode in to downtown together. There we met with many other bikers who are just as committed and dedicated to riding as we are. We walked around the legislative buildings and met friendly, concerned legislators who were open to helping us. From there we met for lunch and then rode home. It was an enjoyable day that I will remember for a long time. Lobbying for bikers’ rights is not work, it is rewarding and enjoyable.

I Support Legislation that:

- Provides direct funding for Motorcycle Safety, Education, and Awareness initiatives.

- Repeals the North Carolina Mandatory Universal Helmet Law.

- Addresses the "Failure to yield right of way" conditions that are killing NC motorcyclists.

- Provides an affirmative defense, for faulty traffic detectors that fail to recognize motorcycles at intersections.

- Protects motorcyclists from arbitrary discrimination in access to services.

I Oppose:

- Changes to learner permit regulation for motorcycles. Any legislation or regulatory change that attempts to create a disproportionate financial burden on novice NC motorcyclists, reduces the amount of time an individual has to master riding skills, or imposes an unfair penalty for failure to pass the skills or knowledge examination.

- Street Gang Prevention Legislation: There are sufficient punitive deterrents to the development of criminal organizations, and adequate funding for surveillance and enforcement procedures. This outrageous discriminatory concept is an egregious infringement on the constitutional right to freedom of association of North Carolina citizens.

- Implementation of more restrictive helmet laws in North Carolina: North Carolina motorcyclists are responsible, tax paying citizens with the capacity to make decisions about our own personal safety.



Photos by Harris