Contact the Governor of Georgia today!
The state of Georgia was the only state to receive a grant in the amount of $70,000 from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to create motorcycle-only checkpoints (MOC). The grant will be used to conduct one or more roadside motorcycle-only checks in accordance with what was outlined in the Request for Applications. The Georgia State Patrol (GSP) will oversee the day-to-day operation of the program.
The program in question is the Motorcycle Law Enforcement Demonstrations Grant (DTNH22-10-R-00386). Although the grant has been closed to new applicants as of August 13, 2010, you can view the grant notice here
On October 26, 2010, the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) sent a letter to former Governor Sonny Perdue requesting he suspend the implementation of the grant until questions raised by the motorcycling community are addressed. The former governor did not respond to AMA's letter. Therefore, the AMA sent another letter, dated February 15, 2011, to Georgia's newly-elected Governor Nathan Deal. To see AMA's letter, click here.
The AMA cautions riders traveling through the state of Georgia that the GSP may mobilize the MOC before, during and after Daytona Bike Week. Initially begun in New York State, the process involves setting-up checkpoints for which only motorcycles are pulled over and subjected to a series of inspections. The NHTSA program would also collect information on high-motorcycle-crash-incident areas and citations would be issued for any violations discovered.
In addition to the letters submitted to the past and present governors of Georgia, the AMA has questioned the potential discriminatory and legal nature of this program and submitted a list of questions for clarification to the New York State Police. To date, New York authorities have not responded. The AMA also sent a letter to the NHTSA Administrator David Strickland urging him to suspend the grant program until questions have been addressed. To view AMA's letter, click here
. To view Administrator Strickland's response, click here.
Representative Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) along with some of his congressional colleagues sent a letter, dated September 30, 2010, to the U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. The congressional letter urged LaHood to suspend the grant program that would expand the highly criticized practice of creating motorcycle-only checkpoints by law enforcement agencies. The AMA strongly supports this important letter.
In addition to Sensenbrenner, Reps. Tom Petri (R-WI), Walter Jones (R-NC), Aaron Schock (R-IL), Doug Lamborn (R-CO), Thaddeus McCotter (R-MI), Paul Ryan (R-WI), Denny Rehberg (R-MT), Lee Terry (R-NE), Ron Paul (R-TX) and Joe Wilson (R-SC) signed the letter.
The AMA believes that the primary source of motorcycle safety is in motorcycle crash prevention and not in arbitrarily pulling over riders and randomly subjecting them to roadside inspections. The NHTSA should focus on decreasing the likelihood of crashes from occurring in the first place. The methods used in New York State remain highly suspect and no public money should be applied to promoting such a program without first addressing questions from the motorcycling community.
Specifically, how do MOCs increase the safety of motorcyclists? Where do the selected states draw their authority to conduct MOCs? Will "probable cause" be required to stop a motorcycle under the terms of this grant program? If so, what will constitute "probable cause?" What types of infractions were recorded by New York law enforcement officials at these checkpoints? What criteria will be used to determine if the MOCs are successful? And, do states have the jurisdiction to inspect vehicles registered in another state?
To send a prewritten message to Governor Nathan Deal urging him to suspend the MOCs which unfairly target motorcyclists, please copy the below language and paste it in the "Please write your message," by clicking here
. You must also complete all required fields before submitting. For the Category field, please select Transportation.
***Prewritten Comments Below***
As a motorcyclist, I understand the Georgia Department of Public Safety was awarded a grant from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to conduct a series of motorcycle-only checkpoints (MOCs). The NHTSA Motorcycle Law Enforcement Demonstrations grant is in the amount of $70,000 and Georgia is the only state to receive this grant for Fiscal Year 2010. I request that Georgia suspend the motorcycle-only checkpoint program until questions raised by the motorcycling community have been addressed.
Specifically, how do MOCs increase the safety of motorcyclists? Where does Georgia draw their authority to conduct MOCs? Will "probable cause" be required to stop a motorcycle under the terms of this grant program? If so, what will constitute "probable cause?" What types of infractions will be recorded by law enforcement officials at these traffic stops? What criteria will be used to measure the success of the MOCs? And, do states have the jurisdiction to inspect vehicles registered in another state?
Again, please suspend this program until questions raised by the motorcycling community have been addressed.
Thank you for your time and consideration.