(L-R: AMA Vice President for Government Relations Wayne Allard, U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, AMA President and CEO Rob Dingman)
The American Motorcyclist Association honored U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) for her support of motorcyclists and ATV riders during the just-completed, two-year 112th Congress.
Klobuchar was singled out for the AMA “Hero” award for her extraordinary efforts to support motorcycling and ATV riding. She was presented the award in March.
Klobuchar was particularly praised for her successful efforts to save the Recreational Trails Program from extinction, as well as to exempt kids’ dirtbikes and ATVs from the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, which had banned the sale of those vehicles.
“Thanks to the extraordinary efforts of Sen. Klobuchar during the 112th Congress, and the efforts of others, the future of motorcycling was assured,” said Wayne Allard, AMA vice president for government relations and a former U.S. senator and U.S. representative from Colorado.
“Hikers, bicyclists, horse riders, cross-country skiers, snowmobilers, off-highway motorcyclists and ATV riders and others can continue to enjoy recreational trails created and maintained through RTP funding,” Allard said. “And if the ban on the sale of kids’ off-highway vehicles remained, it’s unlikely that motorcycling in America would have survived.”
Funds for the RTP come from the federal Highway Trust Fund and represent a portion of the federal motor fuel excise tax collected from non-highway recreational fuel use. In other words, taxes generated by fuel used for off-highway vehicle recreation—by snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles, off-highway motorcycles and off-highway light trucks—fund the RTP.
The RTP is an assistance program of the U.S. Transportation Department's Federal Highway Administration. The RTP program benefits hiking, bicycling, in-line skating, equestrian use, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, off-road motorcycling, ATV riding, four-wheel driving, or using other off-road motorized vehicles.
The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 banned the making, importing, distributing or selling of any product intended for children 12 and under that contained more than a specified amount of lead in any accessible part. On Aug. 12, 2011, President Obama signed into law H.R. 2715 to exempt kids’ off-highway vehicles from the law.