State Sen. Watson Introduces Bill to Increase Spending on Motorcycle Safety in Texas

On Feb. 24, Texas state Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin) introduced S.B. 754, a bill designed to boost the state’s funding and expenditures for motorcycle training and safety programs.

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Currently, $5 of every motorcycle license fee is funneled to a separate account designed to help the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) offset some of the costs of running the motorcycle safety program in the state.

In order to certify the budget, the legislature has declined to appropriate money from the fund since 2005, and as a result, DPS has spent less and less on the program. As a result, the general revenue dedicated account for motorcycle education has accumulated a balance of more than $17.7 million in unspent funds (see acct 0501).

As a result of S.B. 754 an additional $3 would be collected with motorcycle registrations and sent to a subaccount within the existing account to help fund motorcycle education programs. Furthermore, the Texas Department of Transportation would be able to access the funds to help pay for motorcycle awareness campaigns.

Watson is also pushing legislators and bureaucrats to spend the general revenue dedicated funds for their intended purpose. Watch Sen. Watson push state budget officials to spend the funds on motorcycle safety programs during last week’s Finance Committee hearing (Watson starts at 1:01).

Watson and Rep. Sergio Munoz (D-Mission) also introduced S.B. 442 and H.B. 813, respectively. These bills would legalize lane splitting within the state of Texas in certain situations.