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Old 02-10-2015, 10:37 AM   #81
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Senate transportation committee members can be found here:

http://www.senate.state.tx.us/75r/se.../c640/c640.htm
And to make it even easier for those who'd like to call the committee members, here is a list of their last names & phone numbers in one spot:

Nichols, chair, (512) 463-0103
Huffines, vice-chair, (512) 463-0116
Ellis, (512) 463-0113
Fraser, (512) 463-0124
Garcia, (512) 463-0106
Hall, (512) 463-0102
Hancock, (512) 463-0109
Kolkhorst, (512) 463-0118
Taylor, (512) 463-0108
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Old 02-10-2015, 10:43 AM   #82
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Nice little study from Australia. Long read, so not gonna copy pasta.

http://roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov....ring/faqs.html
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Old 02-10-2015, 10:44 AM   #83
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Any idea why I can't edit a post? Anyway, Sen. Nichols' office (the chair of the transportation committe) told me to call the committee's phone number to express support for SB442:

512-463-0067

I still called all the members of the committee directly to register support for SB442 as well...
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Old 02-10-2015, 10:56 AM   #84
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Any idea why I can't edit a post? Anyway, Sen. Nichols' office (the chair of the transportation committe) told me to call the committee's phone number to express support for SB442:

512-463-0067

I still called all the members of the committee directly to register support for SB442 as well...
There's a time limit on editing.
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Old 02-10-2015, 10:59 AM   #85
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Had a nice conversation w. Paul in Sen Garcia's office - rather than just take my name/number, we had a little chat about the bill and I was able to point out some points that he (as a non-rider) never had heard, or would have thought of. Surviving the summer months while wearing gear (airflow), avoiding getting rear-ended, that 20 mph filtering is NOT the same as the 100 mph squids, etc. He was very interested & open to the input, always nice to feel like you're helping some light bulbs come on over people's heads.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:08 AM   #86
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I'm drafting a letter now that I plan to send to the committee members. I'll share it here when I'm done.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:21 AM   #87
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Had a nice conversation w. Paul in Sen Garcia's office - rather than just take my name/number, we had a little chat about the bill and I was able to point out some points that he (as a non-rider) never had heard, or would have thought of. Surviving the summer months while wearing gear (airflow), avoiding getting rear-ended, that 20 mph filtering is NOT the same as the 100 mph squids, etc. He was very interested & open to the input, always nice to feel like you're helping some light bulbs come on over people's heads.
Are you in Senator's Garcia's district?

I just called the Committee's office. Nice lady took my name.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:46 AM   #88
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Are you in Senator's Garcia's district?

I just called the Committee's office. Nice lady took my name.
I'm not, and I sometimes volunteer to the person taking my info that I'm not calling that senator's office because they're *my* senator, but because they're on the relevant committee for that bill.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:54 AM   #89
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Here's the letter I'll be sending out. Feel free to plagiarize the out of it.

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I am writing to voice my support for SB 442, which would allow for lane filtering on motorcycles in stopped and slow moving traffic.

The NHTSA recognized that it is safer for motorcycles to remain in motion than to sit in stop-and-go traffic due to the risk of rear end collisions. Because of this, the NHTSA allowed motorcycles on HOV lanes, even when not carrying a passenger. Like rear end collisions, heat exhaustion and dehydration (covered in both the Motorcycle Safety Foundation curriculum and the Texas DPS Motorcycle Operatorís Manual) are real dangers for motorcyclists. In addition to reducing the likelihood of rear end collisions, lane filtering would reduce motorcycle ridersí exposure to heat during the summer months.

A less immediately apparent benefit to lane filtering would be the reduction of congestion on Texas roads, as it would free up spaces in traffic for cars and trucks. Currently, there arenít enough motorcycles on Texas roads to see a huge impact on congestion, but according to TXDOT, the number of registered motorcycles more than doubled from 2000 to 2010. If this trend continues, it will not take long for the effects of lane filtering on congestion to be seen in metropolitan areas.

There are many videos available on the Internet that show motorcyclists speeding and weaving in and out of traffic that is already travelling the posted speed limit, but this is not lane filtering. It is reckless driving, and laws are in place to penalize drivers that operate any vehicles in this manner. Lane filtering, performed when traffic is moving at 20mph or less, is extremely safe and efficient. California and most European countries have allowed lane filtering for many years, and New South Wales, Australia recently conducted a study that led to the legalization of lane filtering in 2014. The synopsis of that study can be found here:

http://roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov....ring/faqs.html

Thank you very much for taking the time to consider and to listen to support for SB 442. Like thousands of other motorcyclists, I am thrilled at the prospect of lane filtering in Texas becoming a reality.

Sincerely,
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Old 02-10-2015, 12:00 PM   #90
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That's an outstanding letter, great job. I've emailed the transportation committee a bunch of links and my own talking points:

================================

Here’s a link to the 2013 Australian FAQ on the legalization of filtering in NSW:

http://roadsafety.transport.nsw.gov....ring/faqs.html

And a new article about NSW’s new law:

http://www.news.com.au/national/new-...-1226838504353

Here’s an article on a study that was done in Belgium in 2012 that showed the reduction in congestion benefits EVERYONE, not just the motorcyclists:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/motoring/...-everyone.html

UC Berkeley has been studying the issue for several years in cooperation w. CHP, here’s an article & some facts on the practice in CA:

http://www.autoblog.com/2014/10/24/b...fer-than-ever/

Washington state also has a lane splitting bill at play right now. Their bill would all filtering at traffic speeds up to 35 mph (compared w. SB442 @ 20 mph), and at speeds up to 10 mph greater than surrounding traffic:

http://blog.seattlepi.com/seattle911...ting-be-legal/

The American Motorcycle Association (AMA) has come out in support of lane splitting:

http://americanmotorcyclist.com/Righ...Splitting.aspx

This video article by RideApart does a good job portraying for the non-rider what safe/sane/legal lane splitting looks like. It’s a much more realistic picture than the horror videos out there on Youtube of idiots ripping around at 100 mph.


And finally, here’s my list of talking points in favor of splitting, based on my experience riding 17,000 miles in a single year in California on a motorcycle:

1. Encourages the use of gear, and riding deeper into the hot summer months, because you can keep moving. Moving, even at 5-10 mph, provides a lot of cooling for sweaty riders and reduces the hazards of dehydration (loss of mental focus being the most critical, IMO). And if we filter to the front of a long line at a light-controlled intersection, we won’t have to wait through multiple light cycles.
2. Filtering to the front of the line does not disadvantage any car drivers – ie, they are not pushed back in the queue. Filtering motorcyclists essentially ‘disappear’ from the queue, because they naturally move off the line when the light turns green faster than the cars around them & head on down the road. If anything, filtering motorcyclists benefit the cars further behind them by allowing everyone else to move up a space. This is where the reduction in congestion comes from, by encouraging more people to use two wheeled transportation (see: the Belgian study linked above)
3. One of the biggest hazards a motorcyclist faces is car drivers on autopilot. They’ll look right at us, and then pull out in front of us, or turn left across our paths. My experience in California was that that NEVER happened to me, not once, in 17,000 miles of riding. In Houston, it’s a far, far different story. I hold that lane filtering causes car drivers to become far more aware of motorcyclists, and become less likely to violate our right of way even when they’re driving on ‘autopilot’
4. Another major hazard is getting rear ended while stopped at a red light. When we filter to the front, and wait between cars at the front of the line, our risk of getting rear ended drops to zero.
5. Our eyes are higher than those of a car driver, our vision is not obstructed by the car’s enclosure, and the edges of our vehicle are far closer to us than the sides and corners of a car or truck. So moving through a 6’ wide gap on a 3’ wide motorcycle is not some terribly difficult task. Particularly when you recall that SB 442 only legalizes moving 5 mph faster than surrounding traffic – barely more than a walking pace.
6. Less wear & tear on the roads from a 400 pound motorcycle transporting a single person compared with a 3,000 car (or 6,000 pound truck!) transporting… a single person. Less gas consumption, air pollution, competition for parking spaces. I’d like to think these points would pull in support from the environmentalists 
7. Making people aware of the newly legalized status of lane splitting would be very valuable. If the bill passes, I plan on carrying a copy of the law with me to show LEO; heck, I might even put the section # of the vehicle code on the back of my helmet! Helping car drivers understand the speed limits of the law, how it benefits car drivers (and motorcyclists), etc would be very helpful
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Old 02-10-2015, 12:16 PM   #91
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Heh...if this is passed, I'm gonna make T-shirts to wear over my gear that say, "Filtering is legal now," and reference the statute.
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Old 02-10-2015, 12:27 PM   #92
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Funny, I was thinking about putting the statute # on the back of my helmet, back of my topbox on the Bandit, and carry a copy of the text in my wallet to show the cops when (not if) I get stopped for splitting.
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Old 02-10-2015, 01:36 PM   #93
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We need to get this info to other forums so that non-Houston riders get involved. We need legislators hearing from their constituents all over Texas. Also remember that the Legislative session is fairly short, so we need to push hard and fast.
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Old 02-10-2015, 06:43 PM   #94
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ADV Rider and Two-Wheel Texans sites perfect for this. Great posts and great information here. Thanks!
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Old 03-09-2015, 09:21 AM   #95
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Stopped by the capitol this past Friday while in Austin to do some lobbying. Went by Senator Watson's & Rep. Munoz's offices to thank them for carrying the bills, and hit up my own rep & senator to ask for their support. Met w. Dylan Matthews, the chief of staff for Sergio Munoz; he tells me he'll be filing a request for a hearing on the bill before the transportation committee. He'd like to fill the room w. as many supporters as possible; I'll post here when the hearing date is set.
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Old 03-09-2015, 09:39 AM   #96
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Stopped by the capitol this past Friday while in Austin to do some lobbying. Went by Senator Watson's & Rep. Munoz's offices to thank them for carrying the bills, and hit up my own rep & senator to ask for their support. Met w. Dylan Matthews, the chief of staff for Sergio Munoz; he tells me he'll be filing a request for a hearing on the bill before the transportation committee. He'd like to fill the room w. as many supporters as possible; I'll post here when the hearing date is set.
That's awesome!
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Old 03-13-2015, 08:29 AM   #97
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I got a letter back from Rick Miller's office saying that he does not support HB813. The letter did not explain why he does not support it, so I'm thinking we should all call and find out, and offer an explanation as to why he should.

Capitol office phone: 512-463-0710
Sugar Land office phone: 281-980-0117

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Old 03-13-2015, 09:05 AM   #98
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I left a message at both offices and questioned what were his reasons as to why he did not support the bill. I'm about to shoot him and email too.
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:55 AM   #99
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I think it is important to remind them that this bill does not allow high-speed splitting.

I think the reason that a lot of people are against it is similar to why people were against the introduction of CHL. What they see and hear about in the news is people who are doing it wrong, and in a way that would still be against the law if it is passed. Just like law abiding citizens carrying guns concealed has not lead to "blood flowing in the streets", legalizing lane splitting will not lead to an increase in the high-speed shenanigans that gets motorcyclists killed. It will lead to fewer law-abiding motorcyclists being rear-ended in heavy, slow-moving traffic. Traffic studies done in areas where splitting is legal prove it to be safer, and better for the flow of traffic.
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Old 03-13-2015, 10:10 AM   #100
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Just called and talked to Ben from Sen Kolkhorst's office regarding SB 442. Basically said that it was a big talking point and has a lot of support so far. Said there was a big rally last month with a lot motorcyclists for support. Thanks guys!

It looks like a big issue with regards to the Transportation committee seems to be the revenue coming in for TXDOT. They are not bring in a lot of revenue and are looking at other ways to make money.

The following are what they are discussing:

SB 5 by Nichols, Nelson
Relating to the allocation of certain motor vehicle sales tax revenue to the state
highway fund and to the uses of that revenue.

SB 441 by Burton
Relating to the sale of motor vehicles on consecutive Saturdays and Sundays.

SB 442 by Watson
Relating to the operation and movement of motorcycles on certain highways during
periods of traffic congestion.

SB 444 by Hall
Relating to the exercise of eminent domain by certain toll road corporations.

SB 449 by Bettencourt
Relating to the definition of a motorcycle

SJR 5 by Nichols, Nelson
Proposing a constitutional amendment dedicating certain revenue derived from the tax
imposed on the sale of motor vehicles to the state highway fund.
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