Jones’ handlebar height bill sent to governor

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Sen. Rick Jones

Sen. Rick Jones

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Rick Jones’ legislation to allow higher handlebars on motorcycles in Michigan has been sent to the governor’s desk to be signed.

“Motorcycles have changed drastically over the years and customization is very popular among riders,” said Jones, R-Grand Ledge. “One area where they are often doing so is with the height of the handlebars to offer a more enjoyable ride.”

Currently, Michigan law prohibits anything with a handlebar height over 15 inches (measured from the lowest point on the saddle to the highest point on the handlebars).

Senate Bill 568 would increase the maximum allowable height of handlebars on motorcycles and mopeds from 15 inches to 30 inches.

“This legislation could increase manufacturing and installation jobs in Michigan by allowing for additional rider customization that does not expose a safety hazard,” Jones said. “This bill would not allow the giant ‘ape hanger’ handlebars commonly seen in movies.

“I look forward to seeing the governor sign this measure and put Michigan on par with some of our neighbors concerning handlebar restrictions.”

In recent years, states like Wisconsin and Ohio have eased their restrictions. Some states have no height restriction at all.

Jones said the bill was brought to him by the group American Bikers Aiming Toward Education (ABATE) after a member of the riding community proposed the idea.