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Lawmakers call for change to law banning youth vehicles

U.S. lawmakers took turns Wednesday calling for a change in a law that has shelved millions of dollars worth of youth ATVs and motorcycles at a Washington, D.C. rally.

The controversial law, called the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), has led to the banning of certain youth-designed products that don’t meet minimum lead standards. As evidenced by the attendees at the “Amend the CPSIA” rally, the law has hit a number of retail segments, from the powersports industry to the books business to the apparel and clothing industry.

Members of the powersports industry, including dealers and members of the Motorcycle Industry Council and American Motorcyclist Association, attended the rally that drew at least 200 supporters, according to online estimates.

More than a half dozen U.S. lawmakers spoke in favor of revising the law, which one of the lawmakers termed “a joke.”

“When it gets so far that libraries are starting to worry about the books on their shelves, I think we will finally get the attention of the Speaker of the House, the Majority Leader of the Senate, hopefully the president,” Rep. Denny Rehberg (R-Mont.) said.

“If not, we need you as the grassroots to do what you’re doing: To make the noise, to band together, to communicate with your neighbors that this law or the regulations around the law need to be changed so we can bring some common sense back to the government.”

Lawmakers who attended the rally said up to three bills have been introduced that seek to revise the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, which not only affects the sale of powersports vehicles but parts as well.

Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) said the key will be for lawmakers to keep this a bipartisan issue. “If we frame it that way, we should get it done, and get it done this year,” he said of the legislation.

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