WASHINGTON, DC- U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) today introduced legislation (S. 1248) to expand on existing “Cash for Clunkers” proposals by providing vouchers to people who trade in older, less fuel-efficient vehicles for a fuel-efficient motorcycle. Sales of motorcycles – one of the most fuel-efficient vehicles – have significantly decreased and put jobs in Pennsylvania and other states at risk.
“In addition to helping to spur economic recovery and protect manufacturing jobs in Pennsylvania and other parts of the country where motorcycles and motorcycle parts are manufactured and assembled, the inclusion of motorcycles in this Act will help America move away from its dependence on foreign sources of oil,” said Senator Casey. “Motorcycles are inherently fuel efficient. Average miles-per-gallon for motorcycles ranges from 40-50 MPG, even higher for smaller bikes.”
Harley Davidson, a global leader in motorcycle manufacture and sales, operates its largest manufacturing facility in York, Pennsylvania employing over 2,200 people. Harley is the third largest employer in York County.
After fourteen straight years of growth, sales of motorcycles in the United States declined eight percent in 2007, and ten percent in 2008. And due in large part to the downturn in our economy, motorcycle sales have dropped 30 percent in the first quarter of 2009, according to the Motorcycle Industry Council. Harley-Davidson has had to cut production and reduce its work force as a result of these declines in motorcycle sales.
Senator Casey’s Green Transportation Efficiency Act of 2009 (GreenTea) would provide vouchers to encourage consumers to trade in their older, less fuel-efficient vehicles for new, more fuel-efficient cars, trucks and motorcycles. Participants would receive a $2,500 voucher for the purchase of a new motorcycle. The vouchers for new cars and trucks would be a maximum of $4,500.
The amount of the trade-in voucher will be based on the increase in fuel efficiency of the new car or truck compared to the fuel efficiency of the trade-in vehicle. The greater the increase in fuel efficiency, the higher the amount of the voucher.
Eligible trade-in vehicles include cars and trucks, including work trucks. The main difference between the GreenTea Act and similar “Cash for Clunkers” bills is that Senator Casey’s bill allows a trade-in for a new fuel-efficient motorcycle.