Yesterday my Senator Omdahl attempted and failed to amend HB 1030. Because this amendment is a bit hard to find I’ve copied it from the Senate Journal and pasted it below. I think it deserves a careful read.
It begins with rendering 3' and 6' passing moot when riding outside municipalities. Then certain roads that have “sufficient lane width in the highway to provide the separation distance required” by 3’ and 6’ of passing can be designated by local governing bodies as roads that “may be used for bicycle travel.”
This amendment faced a far from unanimous voice vote. Senators who rose in favor of this very bad amendment were: Omdahl (Minnehaha County), Ewing (Lawrence) and Monroe (Hughes, Hyde, Stanley, Sully).
Think about the future:
Next year is a new legislative session and bicycles are a hot topic. Riders should prepare for yet another clothing bill – as a way to collect the pound of flesh ostensibly owed for providing increased safety for cycling road users. Also the Howie and Omdahl amendments won’t disappear. Heck – if invited to make HB 1030 “better” I’d put forth a bill that inserted “or a full lane change” after the 6’ passing requirement. This would allow easier passing of me when I’m controlling a lane on my bike.
Riders may not like politics. But acts of legislatures do not happen in a vacuum.
Whose job is it to keep a senator with an amendment and a silver tongue from banning cycling on roads throughout the state?
Sen. Omdahl moved that HB 1030 be further amended as follows:
On page 1, line 14, of the House Transportation Committee engrossed bill, after "bicycle." Insert:
"The provisions of this section do not apply to any highway outside the incorporated boundaries of a municipality unless the highway has been designated for bicycle travel pursuant to section 2 of this Act.".
On page 1, after line 14, insert:
"Section 2. The Transportation Commission or board of county commissioners may designate a highway that may be used for bicycle travel. The highway may only be designated for bicycle travel if there is sufficient lane width in the highway to provide the separation distance required by section 1 of this Act. The commission or board shall identify the beginning and end point of the highway designated for bicycle travel. Signs shall be posted on the highway designated for bicycle travel to notify the motoring public of the beginning and end point and at regular intervals along the designated highway.".