Each year, the SEMA Action Network (SAN) releases a list of the best and worst automotive bills to come out of state legislatures. The list is published in SAN’s monthly newsletter, Driving Force.
The following are the bills that were proposed in 2011 that would have been the most detrimental to the industry, according to SAN.
None of these bills were enacted into law; however, according to the published story, they may be reintroduced in future sessions.
1. West Virginia H.B. 2190: The bill would have qualified vehicles with exhaust systems that were deemed too loud by a police officer to be guilty of “disturbing the peace,” a crime that carries a fine up to $1,000 per occurrence, six months in jail or both.
2. Arkansas H.B. 1252: The bill would have allowed cities to remove an inoperable vehicle from private property if the vehicle is deemed a “nuisance” under a local ordinance.
3. Connecticut H.B. 5580: The bill would have increased the age requirement for vehicles to be registered as “antique, rare or special-interest” from 20 to 30 years. It would have also increased the tax assessment on vehicles registered as antiques from $500 to $2,500.
4. Hawaii H.B. 1178: The bill would have banned the installation, ownership or use of any aftermarket speakers more than 6.5 inches in height or depth, or more than 100 watts. The bill would have also banned five-speaker aftermarket systems or any aftermarket system that was installed external to the passenger compartment or in an open hatchback.
5. Massachusetts H.B. 1848, New York A.B. 1318: The bill would have imposed additional fees on the purchase of larger or high-emitting vehicles, based on state calculations of carbon emissions and/or vehicle weight.
6. Nebraska L.B. 698: The bill would have removed the labeling requirements on pumps dispensing ethanol-blended gasoline.
7. North Dakota H.B. 1442: The bill would have prohibited vehicle modifications that altered the manufacturer’s original suspension, steering or brake system.
8. Oregon H.B. 3214: The bill would have prohibited the sale of exhaust systems and exhaust system components that could cause a vehicle to produce noise exceeding certain noise limits.
9. Oregon H.B. 3147: The bill would have banned vehicles from having bumpers that were elevated more than 3 inches over the original manufactured bumper clearance. Each offense would have resulted in a fine up to $360.
10. Washington H.B. 1134: The bill would have required an annual renewal fee of $30 (in addition to the one-time $35 license plate fee) for collector vehicle and horseless carriage license plates.