Handle Bar Height Law Repeal
Mar 15, 1999 - The Oregon Senate Transportation Committee considered and passed to the floor HB2613, which would eliminate the handlebar height requirement in Oregon. This makes three consecutive unanimous votes on this bill! That is, House committee, House floor and now Senate committee. We expect a Senate floor vote in the next week.
Feb 22, 1999 - The Oregon House Transportation Committee considered and unanimously passed to the floor HB2613, which would eliminate the ORS requirement for a maximum handlebar height for motorcycles. On Friday, February 26th, the Oregon House voted unanimously to pass HB2613 on to the Oregon Senate.
The origins and reasons for this law are obscured in time. Testimony was presented that clearly showed police use of this statute as an harassment tool aimed at motorcycle riders. One OSP motor officer appeared to present the OSP position of neutrality to the legislation. While the officer raised questions about tall handlebars possibly being unsafe, he also admitted to the committee that photos submitted by BikePAC clearly showed legal motorcycles under the current law. The two riders in the photos had been detained and ticketed.
One legislator suggested changing Oregon's shoulder height law to 15 inches above the seat. Chairman Montgomery asked BikePAC to respond to that idea. Teresa Hepker, Information Manager for BikePAC, stated, "Motorcyclists in Washington state, which has the 15 inch language, are attempting to change their law because of similar harassment."