National and Regional News
WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told a congressional committee he will not remove motorcycles from a proposed import tariff while negotiations continue in a dispute with the European Union over U.S. beef imports. He said he was “sympathetic” to American motorcyclists, dealerships and others, but he refused to take action. “He has chosen the U.S. beef industry over American motorcyclists and Americans who own and operate motorcycle dealerships,” said AMA President and CEO Rob Dingman. At issue is a proposed 100 percent tariff on 51cc to 500cc motorcycles imported to the United States from manufacturers in the European Union. The bikes are included in a long list of products that would be the subject of tariffs as part of the long-running dispute over U.S. beef imports. For more information, click here.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources passed a bill would reopen the Clear Creek Management Area in California for off-highway vehicle use. H.R. 1913, the Clear Creek National Recreation Area and Conservation Act, was introduced by U.S. Rep. Jimmy Panetta (D-Calif.) and co-sponsored by Reps. Jeff Denham (R-Calif.), David Valadao (R-Calif.) and Paul Cook (R-Calif.). This legislation would direct the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to reopen Clear Creek, closed in 2008, but once was considered among the premier OHV recreation sites in the country, attracting thousands of visitors annually. The bill also would protect 21,000 acres of BLM land adjacent to Clear Creek by designating the area the Joaquin Rocks Wilderness.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke stressed the need to update transportation infrastructure on public lands and reduce the multi-billion dollar maintenance backlog. His comments came during a congressional budget hearing June 22. Part of his plan is to create a public/private partnership for transportation on public lands that would provide access unavailable to those not using the tour bus. Zinke also said entrance fee adjustments would help alleviate some of the maintenance backlog.
PLACERVILLE, Calif. — Eldorado National Forest officials have extended through July 21 their recruitment effort to fill seats on a federal resource advisory committee responsible for recommending selected projects on national forest land within El Dorado County. Applicants must represent at least one of 15 interests within three categories legislated by the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000. Seated committee members generally serve a term of four years and include people representing timber and non-timber product harvesting, energy and minerals, developed and dispersed recreation, Native Americans, local, regional and national environmental organizations, teachers, archaeological and historical, grazing and other special permits, watershed associations, wildlife or hunting organizations, and local officials among other interests. Applicants must submit a cover letter, interest form and a background check form to the Forest Service prior to being considered for the committee. Information about the Secure Rural Schools Act, RAC committee make-up and function, membership sideboards and committee application materials may be found at www.fs.usda.gov/eldorado.
O’NEALS, Calif. — The Madera County Board of Supervisors nixed a plan for a 1,000-acre OHV park that would have provided riding opportunities for motocross and other OHV activities.
TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. — The Johnson Valley Shared Use Area will be closed to the public Aug. 11-25, while the Marine Corps conducts training to support a large-scale exercise. It was determined the window of closure for military use could be shortened from the previous announcement of August 1-30, 2017, after the Marine Corps refined the scope of training.The closure period will include the time required to ensure the Shared Use Area is clear of recreation activity prior to training and to confirm the land is clear of hazards prior to reopening the land for public access. The adjacent Johnson Valley OHV Recreation Area will remain open to the public during the closure of the Shared Use Area. The Marine Corps will continue to implement robust public outreach to ensure the public is informed of the temporary change in land use.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Trail 665 in Jones Park is scheduled to officially reopen July 22 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony featuring officials from the U.S. Forest Service and El Paso County. Also speaking at the event are representatives of the Rocky Mountain Field Institute, Colorado Motorcycle Trail Riders Association and Colorado Parks and Wildlife. The trail has been closed to motorcyclists and bicyclists for five years. Trails Unlimited is completing work to connect the trail segments.
STURBRIDGE, Mass. — The AMA is hosting a July 11 meeting on the state’s restrictive OHV registration law. AMA members, other riders, riding groups and event organizers will discuss the Massachusetts’ requirement that out-of-state riders register their vehicles in Massachusetts. The law discourages racing and organized recreational off-road rides for out-of-state riders. The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. at The Sturbridge Host Hotel, 366 Main St., Sturbridge, Mass. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to RSVP.
LANSING, Mich. – The state Senate voted to raise registration and training fees for motorcyclists. The annual registration fee goes from $23 to $25. Initial endorsement fees go from $13.50 to $16, and renewals from $5to $7. The additional registration fee revenue will go to the motorcycle safety education program, while some of the endorsement fee revenue will fund a new program promoting motorcycle awareness.
FRANKLIN, N.C. — The Nantahala Ranger District will conduct an open house from 6-8 p.m. July 11 at Tartan Hall to inform the public about the Forest Plan Revision Process on the Nantahala Ranger District and to informally answer questions on any other local national forest management issues. There will be a 15-minute presentation, repeated as necessary, covering current district activities, as well as a brief overview of geographic areas before proceeding to one-on-one discussions. Subjects in the current Forest Plan include Geographic Areas, Special Interest Areas and a starting point for Interface, Matrix, and Back Country Management Areas. Those attending will find it helpful to review the current Forest Plan Revision website at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/nfsnc/nprevision.
SALEM, Ore. — The governor signed a bill allowing ATV riders to use certain public roads when to connect one trail to another. The riders will have to have a driver’s license to travel on these designation ATV Highway Access Routes. A state committee will determine which sections of road to designate, and signs will be posted to notify riders.
KENNESAW, Ga. — Yamaha Motor Corp. USA announced that its Outdoor Access Initiative endowed more than $100,000 in funds and equipment to several grant recipients during first quarter of 2017. “This quarter is further highlighted by Yamaha’s continued support of the National Future Farmers of America Foundation and Yamaha’s Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow grant program,” the company said. Recipients were: Black Hills Jeeps in South Dakota, Chippewa County Sportsman’s Off-Road Vehicle Association in Michigan, Coalition of Recreational Trail Users in Minnesota, Maryland Off-Highway Vehicle Alliance, National Ag Communicators of Tomorrow, National FFA Foundation, Pennsylvania ATV Trail Development Corp., Responsible Recreation Foundation in Colorado and Tri-County ATV Recreation & Rescue Association Inc. in Pennsylvania.
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Kawasaki Motors Corp. moved its Engine Division’s research and development wing to the division’s headquarters in Grand Rapids, Mich., where it just completed a multimillion dollar renovation of its facility. Since 1995, R&D has been located in Marysville, Mo., where the majority of its engines are manufactured. The result, the company hopes, is a streamlined market-based development “funnel” where market research and information on OEM customer needs, trends and desires seamlessly flow into the R&D department.
RYDER, N.D. — Harley-Davidson convinced the town of Ryder to become “Riders” for this riding season and offered to teach all 84 residents to ride a motorcycle. Harley-Davidson helped refurbish the town's water tower, painting it to mirror the design of the famous water tower that sits atop Harley-Davidson headquarters in Milwaukee.
KORONADAL CITY, Philippines —Guinness World Records has officially recognized this city as the new world record holder for the most motorcycle engines started (3,184) and motorcycle horns sounded simultaneously (3,177), city officials announced. Ben Backhouse, head of records management for Asia Pacific of Guinness World Records Ltd., said they have approved the city’s application for the two world records that were set April 29.
ANAMOSA, Iowa — City officials honored AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer John Parham, by naming a street after him during the J&P Cycles motorcycle rally today, June 23. Parham, who founded J&P Cycles and the National Motorcycle Museum, passed away on April 20 after a long battle with pulmonary fibrosis. He was 62. The June 23 dedication included a presentation by Anamosa City Administrator Alan Johnson, the Parham family and a celebratory first ride on Parham Drive featuring 15 motorcycles. Parham was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2015.
PICKERINGTON, Ohio — The AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame will welcome five new inductees on Sept. 22 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio. The ceremony, which takes place in conjunction with the American International Motorcycle Expo, will officially induct FMF Racing founder Donnie Emler Sr., off-road racing champion Eddie Lojak Sr., world motocross champion and Road 2 Recovery founder Bob Moore, racer and filmmaker Peter Starr and racer, team owner and publisher John Ulrich. For more information, click here.
PICKERINGTON, Ohio — There will be many exciting competition and entertainment opportunities for those attending 2017 AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Riders of Kawasaki, at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio, July 7-9. For 2017, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Riders of Kawasaki, will celebrate the riders and machines that have made Kawasaki motorcycles famous for more than five decades in America. An annual fundraiser for the nonprofit AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame, AMA Vintage Motorcycle Days, featuring Riders of Kawasaki, features vintage motorcycle racing, bike shows, seminars, demo rides, a swap meet with nearly 1,000 independent vendors and much more. Tickets are available for purchase at www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com (click on “Tickets”) or at the gate. A weekend pass is $60, a single-day admission for Friday or Saturday is $40 and a single-day admission for Sunday is $35. Kids 12 and under get in free. Visit www.amavintagemotorcycledays.com for more information.
PICKERINGTON, Ohio — Skip Van Leeuwen, one of the best Tourist Trophy riders in the history of AMA racing, passed away today, June 21. He was 78. Van Leeuwen was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 1999. Van Leeuwen dominated AMA TT competition in the mid-1960s, winning four nationals on the small dirt-track circuits that feature a jump and left- and right-hand turns. He won AMA national TT races in Houston (in the Astrodome), Castle Rock, Wash., and at his home track of Ascot Park in Gardena, Calif. He also won numerous West Coast regional championships during his racing career. After retiring from racing in the early 1970s, Van Leeuwen went on to launch a successful motorcycle accessories business.
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