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Brown Vetos Motorcycle Bill
Bill approved limited lane splitting

Governor Kate Brown has vetoed SB 574, a bill that would allow motorcycle traffic to "filter" into traffic under certain conditions. As required by Article V of the Oregon Constitution, she notified both chambers of the legislature of her reasons for doing a veto.

This bill would allow a person operating a motorcycle to travel between lanes of traffic, under certain conditions and in specific circumstances. Some of the conditions set forth in the bill include the requirement that traffic is either stopped or has slowed to a speed of ten miles per hour or less, that the motorcyclist travels between lanes at no more than ten miles per hour above the speed of traffic, and that the motorcyclist does not impede normal movement of traffic. This practice, known as "lane filtering," is currently unlawful-as it is in many other states-due to legitimate public safety concerns.

While I appreciate that SB 574 is more tailored than previous attempts to legalize lane filtering, I have several concerns with the bill as currently drafted, particularly related to public safety and noncompliance with the proposed conditions, which prevent me from approving it. First, many stakeholders, including law enforcement agencies and members of the public, remain concerned that lane filtering is unsafe for both the motorcyclists and the drivers sharing the road, due to the serious injuries and death that commonly result from motorcycle-involved accidents. Second, although the bill proposes conditions with which a motorcyclist must comply (such as a maximum speed at which motorcyclists can travel between lanes), I remain worried that some will not adhere to these conditions.

Based on these concerns, I am returning SB 574 unsigned and disapproved.

According to the Oregon Constitution, if two-thirds of the members present in each chamber vote to override the veto, it becomes law, but most insiders think that this is unlikely, despite the fact that it passed by more than a two-thirds vote in the House, and might be expected to garner a two-thirds vote in the Senate, if all of the Republicans and Independents show.

--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2021-05-27 14:45:22Last Update: 2021-05-28 09:46:41

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