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MEETING NOTES: February 19, 2022 Judy’s Place, Mobile, AL
In attendance:
Kris Cook
Matthew Schroeder
Michael Stieber
Keith Stieber
Shane Coker
Neil Bruyn
Fran Barber-Bruyn
Ira “Cowboy” Jones
Patty Jones
Lonnie Mixon
Joshua Hopper
Stephanie Hopper
Peter Kupfer
Richard Comston
Chris Best
There was no Zoom link for this meeting.
Kris discovered she’d left the packet of meeting materials at home. She emailed meeting notes from last meeting, agenda, and treasurer’s report to all in attendance. Cowboy moved to accept these documents; Shane seconded. Motion carried.
Peter Kupfer is running for House District 100, West Mobile. He rides, and everyone in his family rides. He talked to us about himself and his stance on the issues.
We discussed billboards. There are mixed opinions about whether they are the best use of our money.
Freddy gave the legislative report. We are tracking several bills; a couple were pre-filed, and a couple more have cropped up since the start of the legislative session. This is the end of the quadrennial. The session starts and ends earlier so everyone can campaign. Last year we worked closely with Hands-Free Alabama toward legislation that makes it illegal to drive with a cell phone in your hand. HB24, the hands free bill, passed out of committee. It is pending a budget isolation resolution. If passed, it will incur a $10K cost to reprogram computers.
SB65, the reflective protective headgear bill, has been introduced by Senator Clyde Chambliss. It was read for the first time on January 11 and referred to the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs. Chris Eliot, senator from Baldwin county, said this is a dead issue. We do not expect this bill to go anywhere this year.
HB294, a modification to the helmet law, was introduced by Representative Jamie Kiel, R-District 18 and first read on 2/8/22. It is basically like Florida’s law, which says helmets are not required for riders over 21 who have over $10K of health insurance. This bill was referred to the House committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security. We need more members before we push this.
HB37, a modification the helmet law, was introduced by Representative Charlotte Meadows, R-District 74. This defines autocycles in such a way as to include the Elio. The Elio has handlebars instead of a steering wheel. This bill says that the operator of an autocycle is not required to have an M endorsement on his license, and is not required to wear a helmet. However, the autocycle is registered, taxed, and titled as a motorcycle. This bill goes on to amend existing helmet statutes concerning which entity is to
publish a list of all approved helmets for the state of Alabama. The bill used to read “The Director of Public Safety” but under this bill, the approving entity will be the secretary of ALEA.
Neil Bruyn made the motion that we discuss our official position with the ALCOC before we take an official stand on these bills. Shane Coker 2nd. Motion passed.
Freddy urged us to pick up the phone and call the person who is supposed to be representing YOU.
Chris Pringle, R-District 101, will be running for re-election. Josh has tried to reach out to him, without success.
Shane Stringer, R-District 102, will be running for re-election. Michael has tried to contact him, without success.
The first thing to ask any candidate is, “Do you ride”? If not, do they even KNOW anyone who rides? If you find a candidate that is responsive to our issues, get involved. Join their campaign.
Matt reported on our Legislative Day, January 20, 2022. Eight people showed up. Matt has a good relationship with Chief Hamilgon, head of security for the State House. He made it possible for us to have such a successful day in Montgomery. We took Chik-fil-A for everyone working in the State House that day. It was good exposure for us. Charlotte Meadows came down and visited with us at length. We were against her bill (HB37), but surprisingly, she was graciously open to our input.
Chris Best, a/k/a Biker Dad, was at the meeting, and told us about his TV show on Channel 25 at 9 AM on Sunday mornings.
Freddy reported on plans to re-start the Southern Chapter of Dixie ABATE. We have a lot of engaged, active members in the Mobile/Baldwin County area, many of whom are members of other organizations. The opportunities for networking are very good.
We probably need to work on our policies and procedures manual.
Matt announced this year’s Meeting of the Minds dates: September 22 through 24, in Des Moines, Iowa. We encourage every Dixie ABATE member to join the MRF and attend this conference.
Matt wrote a letter to the Sturgis Hall of Fame, recommending the MRF for induction.
Matt announced this year’s Bikers Inside the Beltway event that the MRF puts on. It is May 17th.
Matt read the press release from the MRF about End of Life mandates in Europe. It seems far-fetched, but things that happen in Europe often make their way here.
We announced Dixie ABATE’s Court House Challenge. Alabama has 67 counties and 68 county seats! Pay $10.00 to enter and take pictures of your bike in front of county seat court houses to win. Post the pictures up on Dixie ABATE’s Facebook page. If you get the most court houses, you win $200.00 if your membership is year to year, and you win $300 if you are a life member. The last day is November 30th.
Cowboy presented “ABATE Bear” to Dixie ABATE, to auction off as a donation. We auctioned it on the spot. High bidder was Fran Barber Bruyn, with a bid of $300. Thank you, Cowboy, and Fran! That kind of heart is what drives us to keep on keeping on.
Remember, Dixie ABATE pays for your first year of MRF membership if you become a life member!
Our next meeting is at the Rattlesnake Saloon, 1292 Mt. Mills Road, Tuscumbia, AL 35674, at 2 PM on Saturday, April 16, 2022.