States Pass New Laws Regarding Cycles, ATVs


The following is a selection of powersports-related state legislation passed into law during the past month and compiled by the MIC.

HB177, Enacts Motorized Recreational Product Lemon Law
Requires that if mfr. of ATV, snowmobile or boat sold in AK cannot bring nonconforming vehicle into conformity with warranty after 3 or more attempts to repair same nonconformity or total of 30 or more business days out of service for repair (excepting time out of service for reasons beyond mfrs.' or dealer's control), & within warranty period or 1 year, whichever is less, then mfr. must, at consumer's option, replace vehicle with comparable new vehicle or refund full purchase price minus reasonable amount of money for use attributable to consumer. Signed by Governor 5/25/09. Effective immediately.

SB1100, Amends Motorcycle Definition & License Tag Provisions
Amends motorcycle definition to include vehicle in which operator is enclosed by a cabin if it meets NHTSA requirements for a motorcycle. Repeals rqmt. that motorcycle license tag be affixed horizontally to the ground. Prohibits installation or use of devices that conceal or obscure legibility of motorcycle license tag. Signed by Governor 6/16/09. Effective immediately.

HB333, Amends ATV Definition
Amends ATV definition to increase weight from 900 lbs. or less to 1,200 lbs. or less & changes low-pressure tires rqmt. to non-hwy. tires. Signed by Governor 6/10/09. Effective 7/1/09.

HB187, Regulates Advertisements for Motor Vehicle Service Contracts

Requires all advertisements to sell a motor vehicle service contract, including those from a motor vehicle manufacturer, to contain specified written notice with name and contact information for sender of the advertisement. Signed by Governor 5/4/09. Effective 7/1/09.

HB131, Regulates Autocycles; Defines as Motorcycle

Defines autocycle as: enclosed motorcycle with no more than 3 wheels; safety belts for all passengers; roll bar or enclosed cab; steering wheel or tiller; brakes on at least 2 main wheels; complies with motorcycle safety inspection standards. Signed by Governor 4/22/09. Effective 9/11/09.

SB369, Prohibits Wheel Weights Containing Lead or Mercury
Prohibits replacing, balancing, selling, offering for sale or distributing wheel weights or other products for balancing tires on on-hwy. motor vehicle wheels if weight or other balancing product contains lead or mercury intentionally added during product manufacture. Signed by Governor 5/12/09. Effective 9/11/09.

HB34, Requires Rumble Strip Signs for Motorcyclist Safety
Requires ME DOT to install signs on any state hwy. where centerline rumble strips are located. Signed by Governor 6/18/09. Effective 9/11/09.

HB452, Exempts Mfr. Demo Event ATVs from Registration Rqmt.
Exempts ATVs owned by mfr. & operated at demonstration event from registration rqmt.; mfr. Must submit request to Cmsr. with description of event at least 60 days in advance to receive approval. Signed by Governor 5/21/09. Effective 9/11/09.

SB319, Allows Temporary ATV Operation Without Registration Display
Allows operation of ATV registered online without displaying registration number until person receives registration certificate from department or for 30 days, whichever comes first. Prohibits operating ATV with exhaust system modified to increase noise emission above 96 dBA measured at 20 inches. Signed by Governor 6/10/09. Effective 9/11/09.

SB133, Expands Motor Vehicle Lemon Law which Includes Motorcycles

Expands lemon law coverage period from earlier of 15 months/15,000 miles to earlier of 24 months/18,000 miles. Signed by Governor 5/19/09. Effective 10/1/09.

HB1237, Amends Penalties for Unlawful OHV Operation; ATV definition

Amends definition of ATV to increase maximum engine displacement from 800 cc to 960 cc. Allows ATV operation on bridges or on roadway shoulder in order to avoid traveling in environmentally sensitive areas when no other method of avoidance is possible. Prohibits OHV operation for 1 year for certain violations. Enacts vehicle forfeiture & seizure provisions. Signed by Governor 5/22/09. Effective 7/1/09.

SB394, Requires OHV Registration

Amends OHV law to move administration authority from Dept. of Taxation to DMV. Repeals rqmt. for OHV operators to obtain Certificate of Operation sticker to operate on hwy. Requires OHVs to be titled & registered annually; fee for each to be at least $20 but not to exceed $30. Requires OHVs purchased on or after 10/1/09 to apply for title & registration within 30 days of purchase; if purchased before 10/1/09, owner has until 7/1/11 to title & 1 year after to register. Vetoed by Governor 5/26/09. Veto overridden by Assembly & Senate 5/31/09. Effective 10/1/09.

AB441, Amends Moped Definition
Amends moped definition to include vehicles with electric motors of 1500 watts or less & to exclude electric bicycles. Signed by Governor 5/19/09. Effective 10/1/09.

SB395, Requires Dealers to Disclose CO2 Emissions Unless Unavailable
Requires vehicle dealers to prominently disclose estimated amount of CO2 emitted for each vehicle offered for sale beginning with MY 2012 unless info. is unavailable. Signed by Governor 6/8/09. Effective 7/1/09.

HB1158, Exempts OEM from Vehicle Warranty Contract Insurance Rqmt.

Exempts original equipment mfrs. from provision requiring person who issues written automobile/motorcycle warranty contract, mechanical breakdown contract or service contract to maintain insurance policy to cover contractual obligation. Signed by Governor 4/24/09. Effective 7/1/09.

SB812, Expands Lemon Law

Requires mfr. to provide replacement vehicle or refund vehicle purchase price, taxes, etc. minus reasonable use allowance to consumer according to consumer's preference. Reduces calendar days-out-of-service rqmt. from 45 to 30. Prohibits resale of returned vehicle unless covered by 12 month/12,000 mile warranty. Requires mfr. to provide specific disclosure statement to purchaser of resale vehicle. Prohibits resale of any vehicle if returned for complete failure of braking or steering system. Requires that if mfr. reacquires vehicle, mfr. must retitle in its name with title notation "Lemon Law Buyback." Signed by Governor 5/22/09. Effective 11/1/09.

SB515, Expands Lemon Law

Expands period of lemon law coverage from 1 year to 2 years after vehicle delivery to consumer or from 12,000 to 24,000 miles, whichever ends first. Signed by Governor 6/23/09. Effective immediately.

SB124, Permits Fine Suspension for Completing Rider Ed
Permits court to suspend fine imposed for operating motorcycle without endorsement on condition that person, within 120 days of date of sentencing, complete ODOT established motorcycle education course & obtain motorcycle endorsement. Signed by Governor 6/24/09. Effective 1/1/10.

HB3347, Repeals 3-wheel Motorcycle Endorsement & Exam

Provides that 3-wheel motorcycle operator is only required to have basic driver's license or motorcycle license, rather than motorcycle license with special endorsement. Repeals 3-wheel motorcycle exam provisions. Signed by Governor 6/2/09. Effective immediately.

HB339, Increases Motorcycle/Moped Operator Restriction Period

Increases restriction period following issuance of original motorcycle or moped license from 6 months to 1 yr. for restricted motorcycle or moped license holder under age 17. Restricted license holder may not operate after 12 am & before 5 am without parental supervision, except as necessary for employment, school related activity or medical emergency, or while using wireless communication device. Signed by Governor 6/19/09. Effective 9/1/09.

HB3599, Defines Enclosed 3-Wheeled Passenger Vehicles as Motorcycle
Includes in definition of motorcycle an enclosed 3-wheeled passenger vehicle with minimum unladen weight of 900 lbs.; has a single, completely enclosed, occupant compartment; propulsion unit located in front of or behind enclosed occupant compartment; steering wheel; FMVSS compliant seats, safety belts, windshield, wipers & structure; & mfr. produces at least 300 vehicles in calendar year. Signed by Governor 6/19/09. Effective 9/1/09.

SB67, Requires Helmets to be FMVSS #218 Compliant

Requires motorcycle helmets required for all operators & passengers to be FMVSS #218 compliant. Signed by Governor 5/26/09. Effective 7/1/09.

HB1481, Exempts Electric Vehicle Batteries & Related Labor from Sales Tax

Exempts batteries & labor & services to install, construct, repair or improve batteries for electric vehicles from sales tax. Signed by Governor 5/12/09. Effective 8/30/09.

SB58, Requires ORVs to be Titled

Requires ORVs to be titled. Application for title shall be accompanied by an MCO & statement from dealer indicating MSRP. Signed by Governor 2/24/09. Effective 7/1/09.

Source: MIC State Legislative Summary

—Submitted by Guido Ebert