In previous articles, I discussed various aspects regarding mandatory helmet laws and the “Stop Motorcycle Checkpoint Funding Act” that would prohibit federal funds from being used to push for motorcycle-only checkpoints. In June, there was a step in the right direction for riders’ freedom to choose whether to wear a helmet or not and also to help curtail discriminatory checkpoint practices.
On June 4th, an amendment proposed by U.S. Rep. Walberg to the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act 2016 passed in the House of Representatives and on June 9th the bill passed the House. If the bill is passed by the Senate, it will continue to ban the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) spending of federal money on state lobbying efforts for mandatory helmet laws and motorcycle-only checkpoints.
U.S. Representative Walberg’s amendment eliminated a revision to the 1998 Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century that banned this type of NHTSA spending. If passed by the Senate, this will not eliminate any current motorcycle helmet laws or discriminatory checkpoints, and it will not limit the efforts of other entities to push for them, but it will avoid more allocation of resources towards these efforts.