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Uncle Damien's Say


Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

MOTORCYCLE FORUM AT THE WODONGA BOWLING CLUB

Proposed high visibility clothing laws for motorcyclists generated an angry response from riders across the country when they were promoted at a forum in Wangaratta last month.

Another forum will be held at the Wodonga Bowling Club next Thursday evening, August 16, 2012.

IRG understands that at least one member of the Ridesmart North East organising committee resigned in protest.

IRG was not given permission to make a 15 minute presentation on conspicuity laws and their legal effects to the riders attending.

More information on Damien's site - http://damiencodognottooam.blogspot.com.au/

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne Ph 03 9846 8621

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Blood Challenge

For three decades the annual BLOOD CHALLENGE has been run from December 1 to the end of February.

The BLOOD CHALLENGE is a campaign to encourage Australians to give blood and to promote road safety. It began when the Motorcycle Riders' Association (MRA) in Melbourne challenged police to give more blood than riders. That was 1979. It is the longest-running, most successful donor campaign ever organised for the Red Cross in this country, possibly the world.

The Australian Red Cross Blood Service (ARCBS) turned its' back on the BLOOD CHALLENGE in Tasmania, Victoria and NSW in recent years. In 2009 the Victorian competition was turned into a video game, inaccessible to many, and most promotion stopped.

On December 14, 2009, Federal Health Minister Nicola Roxon (Tel: 02 6277 7220) wrote to BLOOD CHALLENGE founder Damien Codognotto OAM.

"It is with great disappointment that I learned you have chosen to return your award in recognition of your 32 years of service as a volunteer with the Australian Red Cross (ARC). I understand that you are displeased with the ARC and its plans for the launch of the annual Summer Blood Challenge to encourage the Australian public to donate blood.

I have written to the Australian Red Cross Blood Service and asked it to resolve the situation as quickly as possible. ......."

The ARCBS ignored the Minister's request, just as it ignored requests for more front line staff to keep donor couches open, sensible hours to make blood banks available to more Australians and a more flexible booking system. The ARCBS makes poor use of mobile blood banks. It closed many blood banks, especially in rural areas. It treats donors as numbers and volunteers as pests to be tolerated.

In spite of population growth we still hear that only 3% of Australians give blood. It's not because they wouldn't. It's probably because the corporatised ARCBS has alienated donors and volunteers, certainly in Victoria, over a decade.

"The blood service is a public relations and administration disaster and it's costing society dearly." Codognotto said.

Damien Codognotto OAM
Independent Riders' Group
Melbourne
Tel: 0419 846 855.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Astonishing ignorance from our top traffic cop. I can understand Neil Mitchel not knowing what he's talking about but Assistant Commissioner Noel Ashby was embarrassing on 3AW last Tuesday. For the taxes we pay we are not getting good service in this area. If I was Ashby I'd be very angry with my researchers and giving the Victoria Police Media Unit a serious pay-out. Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208
Melbourne.
0419 846 855.

Sent: Thursday, July 19, 2007 10:44 AM
Subject: FW: Neil Mitchell and Noel Ashby Interview - 17th July 2007 .... And this is the Assistant Commissioner for Traffic and Transport! The results from the AAMI press release yesterday, just dangerous reporting!Neil Mitchell did an entire week on scooters a month or so ago with four importers lending scooters for the licensing, riding and scooter experience! Noel Ashby should have a better understanding of the vehicles on the road! Thanks for taking the time to listen... Wednesday 18th July Brian O'Neil.
Public Relations Exchange
for AAMI.

Good evening Brian.
Thanks for talking to me this morning. Just watched Channel 7 and Channel 9's 6 pm news in Melbourne. I'm assuming it went out to millions of car drivers nationally. "SCOOTERS - THE NEW MENACE ON THE ROADS". What sensationalist tripe. The figures are rubbery and the growth in the motorcycle community has been steady over more than a decade in spite of antibike taxes and discriminatory regulations. This is a time when responsible authorities and businesses are promoting the safe use of green transport. Pedestrians plus public transport plus powered two-wheelers will never take over from cars BUT each has a legitimate role to play in reducing traffic congestion and pollution. AAMI's boss on TV legitimising driver hatred, regardless of what AAMI intended is a major negative for road safety.

As I predicted, some journos and drivers just can't resist the opportunity to hate riders. Be they bicyclists or on powered two-wheelers. The share-the-road stuff was buried on page two! Waste of paper as journos at Channels 7 & 9 demonstrated tonight and probably tabloid journos will do in the morning. I hope AAMI will admit part responsibility for any rise in bike casualties over the next few weeks as those one-in-ten-thousand drivers lose their tempers and run riders off our roads.

I'll certainly be letting anyone I know that I would not do business with AAMI in a fit. I don't feel that AAMI contibutes to my safety as a pedestrian or a rider. Maybe an over-reaction but that's how I feel. In spite of what the ABS puts out there are some 260, 000 + Victorians who hold a licence to ride a motorbike or scooter. I think 90% + of them also own cars. So it's a significant market.

I'm sure you did not mean to do the damage you did on behalf of AAMI but there you go. It's done. Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
Melbourne.
0419 846 855.

"AAMI National Media Release.
Wednesday, July 18, 2007. MOTORCYCLE & SCOOTER RIDERS RISK LIFE & LIMB: STUDY.

They may be fashionable, more manoeurvrable and easier to park than cars but one-third (33%) of [car?]drivers nationally say motor scooters are the new menace on Australia's capital city roads."
and so on ad nauseum ..................... The tips for sharing the road are OK but the stats are the usual misleading data. No legitimate comparison of injuries/crashes involving bicycles in traffic. Up to 40% of the motorbike & scooter crashes are not in traffic (MUARC) so powered two-wheeler crashes, in traffic, are over-reported. The majority of motorcycle and scooter claims are when the two-wheeler is hit by a car or truck, 30% from behind! That's from the RACV Royalauto.

The information AAMI's PR company uses, we are told, comes from the Queensland Parliamentary Travelsafe Committee. Travelsafe are the committee that ignored rider & industry representatives in November 2006 (?) and introduced a year's car licence before being allowed a bike learner permit, effectively raising the bike licence age to 19 and giving novice riders a whole range of bad riding habits. The ABS. Last time I contacted the ABS it was because they listed Victorian motorcycle licences at around 8000 when there are about 280,000. Unreliable data, I'd have thought. The MRAA website, for credibility? and Sweeney research also supplied information.

I could go on but why don't you give them a ring.
For details or a copy of the media release call 03 9607 4500
Monday 16th July 2007 Adelaide's Neville Grey seems to be a problem for Australians who value freedom (my opinion only).

I will not be surprised if Neville has already had talks with police etc. re the anti bike gang laws. He might even have assured our law-enforcement agencies that the Ulysses club wouldn't object to a crack down on bike clubs. Wasn't that what he did with the $55 per bike, per year, TAC tax in Victoria? Then he reportedly wanted the tax transfered to bike licences so the authorities could take more loot and lower income folk in particular would find it better financially to give up their bike licences! How about a definative statement Nev?

I doubt Neville has much contact with ordinary Australians, maybe some in the higher income brackets, but few otherwise? He just does not seem to understand what law-abiding, responsible motorbike & scooter riding is about. I'm happy to be corrected publicly if Nev's pro-civil-rights.
The proposed laws to combat bikie gangs reach way too far and they do not take into account existing laws or the nation-wide lack of police resources. There are better, more efficient ways to fight drugs and violence and they already exist. All the state has to do is fund them reasonably.

Personally, I don't think the Ulysses Club should have an official position on this at all. Ulysses was set up as a social club for over 50s (40s). Ulysses should not have a political role at all.
But that's democracy for you.

Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
Melbourne.
0419 846 855.

From: Nigel Jays
To: ulysses Sent: Monday, July 16, 2007 5:23 PM
Subject: RE: [ulysses] Fw: Rider's hit 1974. Nothing's new!
I wonder what the “official Ulysses position” is on this ?
Is Neville supporting this on our behalf, like he did with front number plates and anti bike taxes ? -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- From: ulysses On Behalf Of UNCLE DAMIEN
Sent: Monday, 16 July 2007 2:33 PM
To: ulyssesm
Cc: melb-moto
Subject: Re: [ulysses] Fw: Rider's hit 1974. Nothing's new! No Ken. I thought about the wording. My understanding is that the proposed anti gang laws in SA are, as usual, using a sledge hammer to crack a nut. My understanding is that these laws are aimed at a group of under 5000 people across the country but many more people could be effected. These laws go to freedom of expression and freedom of association. What if a Ulyssian is caught doing the wrong thing? Do all of us get put on a black list.Once established there is a real danger they could be used to crack down on non bike groups. The proposals have several non bike groups crying foul already.
As for my bias and hysteria. Your credibility is diminished by askimng readers to believe you know my state of mind.
Laws against drugs, theft and violence already exist. By all means give police more resources to do their work but don't try to take my freedoms away because the State wants to save a quid on enforcement, or feels insecure, or whatever.
Australia is a free country within our laws and I for one want it to stay that way. Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
Melbourne.
0419 846 855.

----- Original Message -----
From: Ken
To: ulysses
Sent: Monday, July 16, 2007 11:00 AM
Subject: Re: [ulysses] Fw: Rider's hit 1974. Nothing's new! "SA proposals for the most draconian anti bike "gang" laws"
Don't look now Damien, but your bias and hysteria is showing.
You could have phrased that "SA proposals for the most draconian anti "bike gang" laws".
Unless you know something South Australians don't, the government here is proposing laws to deal with the activities of 1% gangs like drugs manufacture/dealing and shootings. I haven't seen anything to suggest their bikes are seen as a problem.
When you make a lot of noise about nothing, the noise you make about relevant things tends to get ignored.
Ken.

On 7/16/07, UNCLE DAMIEN wrote:
From: UNCLE DAMIEN
To: A/D Sadler
Sent: Sunday, July 15, 2007 9:46 AM
Subject: Re: Rider's hit 1974. Nothing's new! Thanks Aussie.
Can I pass this on?
You are right. The road toll and blatant discrimination led us to form the MRA in Melbourne in 1978. We did some good for a decade, perhaps two. Got rid of the 80 K pillion restriction and dual licence fees; stopped further rises in CTP costs for bikes and front number plates (Bikers Ltd in NSW, MRA in Vic.); changed official attitudes to rider training; introduced free footpath parking for motorbikes & scooters (1987); won seats on state & federal road safety committees and did a lot of breakthrough PR work including BLOOD CHALLENGES, TOY RUNS, the OZ GP Run & camping, ran bike parking at both the Phillip Island and Albert Park GPs .... and more.
The motorcycle community has grown and so has rider apathy. Our representatives lack passion. With few exceptions, they value seats on committees more than riders' rights.
The discrimination is still there, more subtle and efficient maybe, but it's there. The TAC tax, traffic filtering promoted for bicyclists but banned for motorbike & scooter riders, higher licence age (Vic.), car licences for a year before bike learner permits (Qld.), SA proposals for the most draconian anti bike "gang" laws (Patches you can buy aren't worth anything but if a rider wants to wear advertising on his/her back it could soon be illegal.), wire rope barriers, Toy Runs broken up (OZ-wide, Dubbo NSW and Melbourne in particular) and a lot more.
If you want a copy of Aussie's attachment, contact him direct.
Damien Codognotto OAM.
Melbourne.
0419 846 855

----- Original Message ----- From: A/D Sadler
To: Australian Motorcycle News
Cc: UNCLE DAMIEN
Sent: Saturday, July 14, 2007 5:27 PM
Subject: Rider's hit 1974. Nothing's new!
Hi ya folks, Just browsing back through my old mag collection and came across this. Check the date on attachment bottom. I guess this is the kind of stuff which prompted founding of the MRAA. Gives an idea of how long this blatant discrimination has been going on. Younger riders take note of our creeping bureaucracy. No cameras or speed traps back then. Not even a 100kph (60mph) open speed limit, though it was just about to happen along with compulsory seat belts. The road toll was a horrifying 1034 deaths, the main cause being overtaking head-ons due to a lack of government spending on divided roads. I was driving trucks interstate and always felt bad about traffic banked up behind the ol' 1418 Benz which at times was flat out at 12kph up some hills, especially the Razorback Range south of Sydney. Today the road toll is considered horrendous if it reaches half 1974's figures despite six or seven times the amount of traffic. Vehicles handle much better and are far safer yet we are being told to slow down more. Young men will always want to go faster as indeed we did 30 odd years ago. However governments refuse to spend money on or embrace comprehensive driver education including compulsory practical everyday road skills training. (As against controversial advanced driving courses which would possibly be good if responsible attitudes were taught in the first place.) As the pop song back then goes, "When will they ever learn?" Here's to ya....................Aussie Sadler.
PO Box 493,
Mornington,
Vic. 3931
Phone; 0405 236 529.

MEDIA RELEASE 2 - LEARNER APPROVED MOTORCYCLES.

July 10, 2007. Novice motorbike and scooter riders in Victoria will at last be able to ride machines that safely cater for their size and weight. The new regulations were announced by Roads & Ports Minister Tim Pallas this week. But the legislation will be on hold till July 1, 2008? This has angered many in the motorcycle community and industry. The idea that restricting the engine size of a two-wheeler was a safety measure for beginers was always flawed. In the last 30 years technology has produced astonishingly fast yet very small bikes. In that time the size and weight of would-be riders has changed while car costs and climate change have increased the popularity of environmentally friendly transport. Public transport is not an answer for many.

Tall and/or heavy riders are at risk on rural roads and on long commutes like Geelong or Warragul to Melbourne, if their machine is too small for them. Responsible authorities are promoting both road safety and environmentally-friendly transport. States around us, NSW/ACT, SA and Tasmania already have learner approved motorcycles LAMs. Why not use their lists of suitable learner bikes and introduce this life-saving initiative to Victoria immediately. Damien Codognotto OAM
Melbourne.
Mobile 0419 846 855.

July 6 2007

Motorcycle reform welcomed

The Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce (VACC) commends the Minister for Roads and Ports, Mr Tim Pallas, for his announced introduction of a Learner Approved Motorcycle Scheme (LAMS) for Victoria.

“This is very good news for motorcyclists and will contribute positively to the safe use of motorcycles, and the correct matching of motorcycle with rider, on the State’s roads,” VACC Executive Director David Purchase said.

Mr Purchase calls on the Minister to now implement this overdue safety initiative as soon as possible.

“It makes much more sense for power to weight ratio to be the determinant for learner and probationary riders, rather than the erroneous cubic centimetre limit that has applied until now.

“This announcement sensibly brings Victoria into line with South Australia, Tasmania and NSW,” he said.

“Learners and probationary riders can now choose motorcycles best suited to their experience, size and body shape. It will also encourage them to choose a motorcycle that they will then hang onto, rather than leaping onto a high-powered machine the moment their 260cc restriction period ends.

“VACC has been pushing for a review of LAMS through its participation on the Minister’s Victorian Motorcycle Advisory Council, and we are pleased that the Minister has taken this positive step.

“Sales of motorcycles and scooters have been going through the roof. The adoption of LAMS is the first meaningful motorcycle policy reform in many years in Victoria. It is increasingly important we create a safer road-use regime for the growing army of two-wheeled commuters and motorcycle users.

“We now urge the Minister to look at other areas of reform of Victoria’s motorcycling and road-sharing practices.

“VACC would like to see signed motorcycle and scooter Safe Routes, with special traffic sharing initiatives such as dedicated lanes and safety boxes at intersections, to make two-wheeled transport as safe as it can possibly be.

“This is a very good announcement by the Minister,” David Purchase said.

22/04/2007

Sent: Sunday, April 22, 2007 2:00 PM
Subject: Re: [ulysses] Fw: CH 7 - TODAY TONIGHT BIKE STORY THIS WEEK.


Thanks Maneater.

But maybe you'd better wait to see the Today Tonight segment on the speedster. I think I did alright in the circumstances but the TT people are expert at putting to air what they want to go to air.

I hope we get a fair go. If we don't I hope Channel 7 gets complaints from riders across OZ.

Doing the interview was a dilema. The way it looked, all riders were going to be "tarred with the same brush". Sensational tripe that would have a negative effect on bortgh our road safety and our ability to defend riders' rights. The speedster chose a tourist road and he chose to make his insane ride very public. He could have made his run on a quiet twisty road and just shown the video to his mates, but he did not.

I felt someone had to speak up for those of us that are responsible, legitimate riders. Give the club scene and ride days a plug. OK. Lots of us enjoy a bit of a zoom on occasion but the vast majority choose an appropriate place. I thought we could maybe squeeze a mention in about the restrictive laws and discriminatory taxes imposed/proposed on/for the motorcycle community.

I'm still fighting the TAC $54 per bike, per year rip off in Victoria. Queensland is looking at a similar antibike tax. And there's a whole lot more coming to reduce our exposure to motorbikes. I want motorcycling as free as possible. The speedster's ego trip was not going to help.

I reckon it was the MRA's job to do the TT interview in this town. I passed it to them. I did not know if the MRA had spoken up. One thing is clear to me, this is not the same issue as an official media release supporting police impounding bikes.

TT came back to me. Considering the pros & cons I took the risk and did the interview. At least the interviewer and crew learned there's more to motorcycling than suicidal boy racers.

I talked to camera for more than half an hour. What gets to air we have to wait and see.

Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
Melbourne.
0419 846 855.

19/04/2007

For your info.

Damien.

Sent: Thursday, April 19, 2007 10:24 AM
Subject: CH 7 NEWS - HI SPEED BIKIE!

Channel 7 Melbourne rang me early this morning. The journo claims to have "official" footage of a speeding motorcyclist covering his number plate with his foot. I suspect it is from a road authority freeway camera, or like device, and the footage has been leaked to the media in line with the apparent antimotorcycle culture at VicRoads, Police and TAC.

The most obvious example of this antibike culture being in Australian Motorcycle News (March 7 to 20, 2007. Page 5) when white line manager, Gregory Yorke was reported proudly telling AMCN "I have a pathelogical hatred for motorbike riders". In my experience, Yorke isn't the only road authority employee with this antibike attitude. This culture does not encourage objective road safety research.

Off-the-record, I pointed out to the journalist that there were some 270,000 Victorians licenced to ride motorcycles and scooters and the vast majority of us were safe, law-abiding riders. I pointed out that there were proportionately as many hoons in cars as on bikes. I said this speedster should be seen in context. I told her not to put the incident in context was negative to road safety. I got the impression that the journo did not want to hear that.

Sensationalist reportering does a lot of damage to motorcycle and scooter safety both in terms of not discouraging the antibike culture in some road authorities and in terms of seemingly justifying aggressive behaviour in a minority of drivers.

The numbers of motorcycle and scooter riders on Australian roads is steadily increasing. The reasons are obvious. Car costs. Global warming. Traffic stress and congestion. Responsible authorities are encouraging the safe use of fuel and space efficient vehicles.

I gave CH 7 the Motorcycle Riders' Association's Road Safety & Research Officer Michael Czajka's number.


Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
0419 846 855.

04/04/2007

Jordan Baker Transport Reporter
The Sydney Morning Herald.
April 3, 2007.


"TIM MURRAY was sick of sitting in traffic jams, spending a fortune on petrol and feeling guilty about the environment. So, like hundreds of Sydneysiders, he decided to buy a scooter.

For three years, he has parked in an area behind the footpath on Kent Street. Dozens of riders have joined him. There were no signs saying they couldn't park there, and no one had complained. But last week, without warning, City of Sydney rangers slapped a $77 fine on every bike in the area.

Mr Murray said riders were furious and felt that while the council was saying it wanted to reduce congestion and pollution, it was penalising people who were doing exactly that. "Why does the council want to hound bikes from the city when it is a free, ready-made solution to the traffic problems?" he asked. "It wasn't a problem, it wasn't blocking the footpath.

"There's no parking on the street for motorbikes or scooters. There's a few hundred spaces in the whole of the city. If you look at car spots, there's probably 10,000 or more." Sandra Fleischmann, a motorcycle rider, said she had never seen any signs nor had she had any trouble at the popular Kent Street spot. "It's a completely dead space, you're not obstructing pedestrians at all," she said.

She accused the council of failing to encourage or keep up with the scooter and motorcycle boom, even though the vehicles reduced congestion and had less impact on the environment. "The City of Sydney Council is a progressive council in general - why not with respect to its motorcycle parking strategy?" she asked. "In Melbourne, motorcycles are permitted to park on footpaths anywhere, as long as they do not obstruct pedestrians and do not pose a public liability. Why the difference between the two jurisdictions?"

A spokesman for the City of Sydney said the council would review the fines issued on Kent Street. He said the riders might not have been aware that it was illegal to park on the footpath. He said the number of free motorcycle parking areas had been increased to almost 600. The traffic committee would consider a proposal for an extra 25 motorcycle parking spots in the city centre this month. "The City of Sydney is preparing a strategy to promote scooter and motorcycle use and to address parking needs which we recognise is a key issue," the spokesman said. "The strategy will be released later this year for public comment."

Figures from the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries show motorcycle sales grew for the fourth year in a row in 2006, and scooter sales were 43per cent higher than in 2005."

...An extra 25 spots? WOW!!

Drop in the ocean - as is the current allocation.

I know the city and its designated bike parking areas pretty well. Compared with the set-up in Melbourne, it's criminal. Melbourne is a biker's mecca as far as parking goes - for now.

The spot referred to in the article is exactly as they describe it - a space where the bikes are off the footpath and off the road - totally out of everyone's way...I've parked there myself many times, and it's been (up until now) an accepted and widely-used option for city commuters on bikes for years. The powers-that-be are in danger of unleashing a monster here...

The irony is that when I was working on Fiddler at the Capitol Theatre (Haymarket) for a couple of months in 2005, I made a point of checking with the parking wardens about being able to park my bike on the footpath in one of the recessed sections along the side of a large building. They assured me it was absolutely fine, as long as the bike didn't stick out into the pedestrian thoroughfare.

Clearly not the case any more, if this new development is anything to go by.

KK

20/03/2007

Get into the debate on road tolls.

The Melbourne Age ran a front page story today headlined NEW TOLLS URGED TO CUT TRAFFIC.

"Congestion on Melbourne's roads costing economy up to $2.6 bn a year, inquiry finds. New tolls on existing roads could be considered as part of a road strategy to ease worsening traffic congestion ......." I strongly oppose road users paying for infrastructure they own. Traffic congestion is the result of too many cars. 70% of cars round Melbourne carry one person. Many of those trips could be made better another way. Traffic congestion costs us billions and destroys our quality of life.

The solutions to the congestion problems include:

* Completing unfinished road projects.

* Better road maintenance.

* A moratorium on new road projects.

* Major investments in public transport.

* Encouraging environmentally-friendly, space efficient vehicles like bicycles, motorcycles & scooters.

* Ensure there is adequate, free and secure parking at public transport (park & ride facilities) terminuses and hubs.

* Discouraging single-occupant cars.

Bicycles, motorcycles and scooters should never pay road tolls because:

* Riders would avoid safer toll roads.

* Riders would take alternate routes possibly damaging the amenity of some areas.

* Riders improve traffic flow by reducing the number of cars on a road (most riders have cars) and by traffic filtering.

* Riders would be discouraged from using environmentally-friendly, space-efficient vehicles.

* Toll companies and their share holders won't benefit financially or PRwise by charging riders tolls.

* Tolling equipment was not designed to toll bikes. The cost of developing and supplying a system riders would find satisfactory and acceptable would be prohibitive. To join the debate and/or read the report go to www.theage.com.au . What they say about bicycles, motorcycles and scooters should be interesting.

Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
0419 846 855.
6 855.

28/02/2007

Tim Pallas MLA
Minister for Roads & Ports.
Victoria.

Dear Minister Pallas.

In January 2007 the Motorcycle Riders' Association in Melbourne invited Ulysses Club Vice President from Adelaide, Newville Grey (among others) to a meeting with you as the new Victorian Transport Minister. No representatives of the motorbike & scooter industry or off-road riders were invited. After that meeting Neville Grey issued a written outline of the meeting which was circulated on the internet. Apparently he proposed that the discriminatory $54 per bike per year TAC tax be moved from road-registered bikes to bike licences because this would mean more cash into Victorian Governemnt coffers. This from a South Australian representing a social club for over-fifties riders. The Motorcycle Riders' Association in Victoria has a written policy on the tax and MRA representatives at the meeting with you had no right to change that policy.

It reads.

"Policy. The MRA strongly opposes the $50 TAC levy."

Also MRA written policy. "Policy. The MRA will oppose legislation we perceive to be ineffectual or discriminatory."

The TAC $54 (and rising) tax is definitely discriminatory.

It can also be considered ineffectual because, while some good may have come of it, far greater good would have come from giving the Victorian Motorcycle Advisory Council (VMAC) proper authority and funding similar to that for the bicycle community.

This year bicycle safety and facilities in Victoria will get $7 million plus from the State Government, $ 2 million from the Melbourne City Council and a further $490,000 or so from Vicroads for a new bicycle only lane through the CBD. This doesd not include funding from other Councils or from the Federal Government. While Victoria's motorbike & scooter riders are forced to pay this unfair tax, we will never get a proper budget for VMAC. The situation is disgraceful and the level of anger in the motorcycle community is rising. Before the November 2006 State election the Liberals, the Nationals and the Greens all recognised the TAC antibike tax was unfair to Victoria's 260,000 plus bike licence holders and that it discouraged environmentally friendly vehicles. The next Victorian election may be some time away but the an tibike tax issue will not go away. Abolish the TAC motorbike & scooter tax and fund VMAC appropriately. Any attempt to tax riders licences will be fought and defeated as it was in Tasmania.

Damien Codognotto OAM.
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
0419 846 855.

11/02/2007

G'day All.

Please bear in mind that the BLOOD CHALLENGE
scores here are not taken on the same day
and there are donor registration forms still
in the system, but the figures here indicate
something.

In January 2007 two BLOOD CHALLENGES are running
next door to each other. In Victoria it's the
28th annual Challenge. The Vic Challenge has
about 50 organisations competing. In NSW/ACT
it's the 15th annual Challenge. In NSW/ACT it's
the police vs the mpotorcycle community.

Victorian Donor Champions for the last several
years are our firefighters. The CFA leads the
Vic Challenge with 389 blood donations. The
Scouts are coming second with 172. Third
are Vic's motorbike & scooter riders and fourth
are the Police.

I did not include the riders' or police scores
because I wanted to compare them to their
opposite numbers in NSW/ACT. There are roughly
the same number of police in Vic as in NSW/ACT.
There's close to 270,000 licence holders in
Vic.

Have a look at these results.

NSW/ACT Police 750 units of blood donated!
Vic Police 124 inuits of blood.

NSW/ACT riders 853.
Vic riders 167.

I'm impressed. What a fantastic effort from north
of the Murray.

There's still time to get to a blood bank. The
Challenges run to the end of February and anyone
can support any group. You do not have to be a member
to give blood or plasma. Just fill in the registration
for your favourite organisation after donating at
your local Blood Bank.

Call 13 14 95 to find out more.

Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
Mobile: 0419 846 855.

28/01/2007

MEDIA RELEASE

Australia's Defence Minister, Dr Brendan Nelson,

is a keen motorcyclist. He
rides a Triumph. Next Saturday, February 3,

2007, he will be at the 13th annual Silverwater

Street & Custom Motorcycle Show as a guest Judge.

A feature of the show will be a display by the World

War Two Re-enactment Club of Australia. All their

bikes have been painstakingly restored to
original condition. Those interested in the role

of the motorcycle in WW2 can contact Eric Moeller

on 0410 398 459. Or Marc Hutchin on 0418 630 322.

Dr Nelson will address the crowd and share some

of his riding experiences including recollections of

his involvement in the National Motorcycle Awareness

Ride in Canberra last January. The NMAR was organised

by Bikers Australia.


24/01/2007

To Members of the Victorian Parliament and the Victorian Motorcycle Advisory Council (VMAC). I call on MPs to raise the test photographed in Parliament and to insist on full disclosure of the real cost of wire rope barriers (WRBs). I call on VMAC to insist on real, objective and independent research into what happens to motorbike & scooter riders who hit WRB. Five of the attached photos were taken by Graeme Posker of OZ Sidecars on Wednesday, January 24, 2007. The site is on the Burwood Highway in Upper Ferntree Gully, east of Melbourne. The pictures show padding around WRB posts. The place is the site of motorcyclist Toby Noble's death in November 2002. There was nothing in the coroner's short report to suggest he would not have survived if the WRB had not been there. Presumably this is a trial of the pads but I don't know anyone who was consulted about it. It does not seem logical to me that this is a safety trial unless a rider slams into the padded WRB for real and a full scientific investigation of the crash is undertaken. It looks like a product weathering test. Of the seven or eight fatal crashes, that we know about, at WRB sites, there has never even been a full coroner's inquiry into any of these deaths. In the coroners' reports on WRB deaths that I've seen, there is nothing to suggest that the victim would not have survived if the WRB had not been in the way or if a smooth concrete barrier was used instead of WRB. I would be interested in any lawyer's opinions on WRB, pads and the road authority's legal liability. To my mind these pads are an admission that WRBs are dangerous to riders. To my mind too, this trial is just spending budget because the cost of putting this padding on all WRB in Australia would be prohibitive. The research money, probably the discriminatory TAC tax on Victorian riders, would have been better spent on good science studying what happens to a rider who hits the steel posts of a WRB. VMAC should study ALL the riders who have died at WRB sites. I do not believe that there are only seven or eight dead or that no rider has been seriously injured sliding into this deadly fence. There was good police data from the WRB crash that killed the woman near Hobart in Tasmania. The attached photo taken near Orford in Tasmania on January 12, 2007, shows WRB that meets no safety standard I've ever seen. Australian road authorities have a massive investment in WRB. Australian road authorities are the primary source of funding for researchers. It may not please some that this barrier system has been shown not to stop larger vehicles as the manufacturer's sales video claims. A look at the video of the fatal truck crash at Yatala in Queensland on July 24, 2006, will convince most that WRB simply won't stop vehicles with large diameter wheels. In that crash a truck crossed the median strip of a divided highway, careering head-on into a line of cars. The WRB didn't stop it. One dead, eight in hospital, six or eight vehicles destroyed. The highway was closed in both directions for several hours. The RACQ's John Wikman called for the WRB to be replaced. The manufacturer said WRB was never designed to stop trucks! It will be interesting to see what the Coroner has to say about the Yatala fatal. An objective look at the cost to the taxpayer of WRB, including purchase, installation, maintenance & repair and replacement (after about 10 years compared to concrete barrier's 80 or so years) should convince most that spending road safety funds on experimenting with pads that can never be fully deployed, even if they did work, is a further waste of road safety funds. Whatever has been spent, it is too much for a weathering test on a doomed product. Damien Codognotto OAM MRA Life Member. Ulysses Club 21208. 0419 846 855.

23/01/2007

From July 2007 would-be motorbike & scooter riders in

Queensland will have to hold a car licence for a year

before they can even apply for a bike learner permit.

I'm not sure where this leaves small, auto scooter riders.

This discriminatory and restrictive legislation is based on

bad science done by non-rider bureaucrats. The logic isn't

there and terms such as "estimating", "implies", "may

result in" and "likely to occur" are too common in the

Government's justification of this very bad law. The decision
is NOT based on real consultation or good science done

locally. It is based on a paper search of interstate and

overseas documents with no guarantees of methodology

or relevance.

The new regulation won't:

Reduce motorbike & scooter casualties.

Reduce cost of motorbike & scooter casualties to the

taxpayer.

The new regulation will:

Increase illegal riding.

Restrict environmentally friendly vehicles.

Restrict vehicles that ease traffic congestion.

Cost jobs in the motorcycle industry.

Cost jobs in the tourist industry.

Damage motorcycle sport.

Responsible authorities are promoting the safe use of green

vehicles on-road. Motorbike & scooter riders are legitimate

road users, they are environmentally friendly. They pay

road tax. Governments recognise this legitimacy by

road-registering two-wheelers.

It is hypocrisy for the Qld Govt to claim it cares about rider

safety. Its' training system is hopeless compared to the

southern states yet it introduces this unfair restriction

while its' road user education efforts are below the national

average.

It is hypocrisy for the Qld Govt to claim they are reducing

young people's risk of exposure to a bike crash while doing

nothing to reduce the prime cause of vulnerable road user

casualties, car driver error. Mobile phone laws aren't enforced,

TV screens in dash boards and much more.

If anything, car drivers should have a year's experience

on a bike, on-road, before getting a car learner permit

because anecdotal evidence says that drivers with two-wheel

experience hit other road users less often. Car driver error

is the greatest cause of vulnerable road user casualties. It's
the Govt's duty to riders to use rider taxes to study the positive

effects of becoming a safe rider on driver behaviour.

It is hypocrisy for the Qld Govt to claim it cares about the

environment while introducing what is probably the oldest

bike licence age in the world.

Bike riders and bike industry people in Qld should be contacting

their Members of Parliament now. Queenslanders can get the

contact for their MP at www.parliament.qld.gov.au .

Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
0419 846 855.
46 855.

21/01/2007

MEDIA RELEASE

FROM JULY 2007 would-be motorbike & scooter riders in Queensland will have to hold a car licence for a year before they can apply for a bike learner permit. It is not clear how this effects small, auto scooter riders.

This discriminatory and restrictive legislation is based on bad science done by non-rider bureaucrats. The logic isn't there and terms such as "estimating", "implies", "may result in" and "likely to occur" are too common in the Government's justification of this very bad law. The decision is not based on real consultation or good science done locally. It is based on a paper search of interstate and overseas documents with no guarantees of methodology or relevance.

The new regulation won't:

Reduce motorbike & scooter casualties.
Reduce cost of motorbike & scooter casualties to the taxpayer.

The new regulation will:

Increase illegal riding.
Restrict environmentally friendly vehicles.
Restrict vehicles that ease traffic congestion.
Cost jobs in the motorcycle industry.
Cost jobs in the tourist industry.
Damage motorcycle sport.

Responsible authorities world-wide are promoting the safe use of green vehicles. In 2007 vehicle emmissions and traffic stress are real. Motorbike & scooter riders are legitimate road users. They are environmentally friendly. They pay road tax. Governments recognise this legitimacy by road-registering two-wheelers. It is hypocrisy for the Qld Govt to claim it cares about rider safety. It
introduces this unfair restriction while its' road user education efforts are below the national average.

It is hypocrisy for the Qld Govt to claim they are reducing young people's risk of exposure to a bike crash while doing nothing to reduce the prime cause of vulnerable road user casualties, car driver error. Mobile phone laws aren't enforced, TV screens are allowed on dash boards and much more.
Raise driver skills and awareness and ALL road users are safer. If anything, car drivers should have a year's experience on a bike, on-road, before getting a car learner permit because anecdotal evidence says that drivers with two-wheel experience hit other road users less often. Car driver error is the greatest cause of vulnerable road user casualties. It's the Govt's duty to riders to use rider taxes to study the positive effects of becoming a safe rider on driver behaviour.

It is hypocrisy for the Qld Govt to claim it cares about the environment while introducing what is probably the oldest bike licence age in the world. Bike riders and bike industry people in Qld should be contacting their Members of Parliament now. Queenslanders can get the contact for their MP at www.parliament.qld.gov.au

Damien Codognotto OAM
MRA Life Member.
Ulysses Club 21208.
0419 846 855.
46 855.


20/01/2007

BLOOD CHALLENGES RUN TO THE END OF FEBRUARY IN VICTORIA AND IN NSW/ACT
SO YOU STILL HAVE TIME TO SAVE A LIFE AND TO SUPPORT YOUR FAVOURITE ORGANISATION - CALL 13 14 95 TO FIND OUT ABOUT DONATING BLOOD AND FOR A BLOOD BANK NEAR YOU

Blood Challenges began in Melbourne in 1978 when the founding President of the Motorcycle Riders' Association, Damien Codognotto, challenged then Police Commissioner, Mick Miller, to a competition. Could the Police give more blood than Victoria's motorbike & scooter riders over the summer?

In January 2007 we are half way through the 28th annual BLOOD CHALLENGE in Victoria. It's probably the longest-running blood donor campaign in the world. This summer, 48 organisations are competing. The total is down on last year but there are a lot of new donors. That's good, but with the bush fires and the road toll on top of the usual demand for blood products, the Red Cross needs every donor it can get.

To support your favourite organisation just give blood then register your donation on the Challenge form provided at the blood bank.

It is extraordinary that during such a terrible fire season, the COUNTRY FIRE AUTHORITY (CFA) volunteers are again our biggest donor group. 271 DONATIONS SO FAR! The CFA has been Victorian Donor Champion for several years, even so, a great effort. Congratulations.

But it's not over yet.

Second place in the Victorian Challenge is tied. MOTORBIKE & SCOOTER RIDERS equal with the SCOUTS & ROVERS at 99 units so far. There are over 280,000 Victorians who hold bike licences so 99 isn't something we can crow about.

Third are the VICTORIA POLICE with 74 donations.

Fourth come unregistered organisations with 58, fifth are BICYCLE VIC with 46 and sixth the SPORTING SHOOTERS with 42.

In NSW and the ACT the 15th BLOOD CHALLENGE is also half way through. North of the Murray two groups compete - Police and the motorcycle community. I'd like to see an interstate Challenge too. Victoria vs NSW/ACT. NSW/ACT would have beaten us last year so it will be interesting to see which state gives the most blood overall at the end of February 2007.

There's still time to help. Call:
13 14 94

Damien Codognotto OAM
Honda MPE
BLOOD CHALLENGE 28 Co-ordinator.
0419 846 855.

03/01/2007

MEDIA RELEASE - 28th BLOOD CHALLENGE

The 28th annual BLOOD CHALLENGE runs to the end of February 2007 in Victoria. There are other BLOOD CHALLENGES but this is the longest-running donor promotion for the Red Cross in Australia, maybe the world. It began in 1978 when the Motorcycle Riders' Association's founding President, Damien Codognotto, challenged the Victoria Police to give more blood than Victoria's riders over summer.

The latest 2006/'07 Challenge update shows 37 organisations competing. The Country Fire Authority has the highest score ahead of the Scouts and individual donors. Victoria's motorcyclists are fourth leading the Police in fifth place.

BUT, the total is well down on this time last year.

Damien Codognotto OAM
BLOOD CHALLENGE Co-ordinator for HONDA MPE.
Mobile: 0419 846 855.

01/01/2007 - LETTER TO THE EDITOR.

Happy New Year Victoria!

The stink of bushfire smoke in the air, the news full of crash reports and the annual blood drought. Firefighters are Victoria's largest blood donor group. Bushfires take them away. Road smashes drain the blood bank. Fires, smashes and blood shortages are linked.

Not everyone can fight fires but most of us can contribute in one, or both, of two ways.

First, take more care on the road. The injury you do not inflict or sustain, means less demand on the blood bank. It also means one less smash our emergency services, who are supporting our firefighters, have to deal with.

Second, take up the Challenge, give blood. Most of us can donate but too few do. Giving blood does save lives. Call 13 14 95 for information.

Damien Codognotto
Templestowe.
***********************************

Damien Codognotto OAM
BLOOD CHALLENGE Co-ordinator for HONDA MPE.
Mobile: 0419 9846 855.

Thursday 21st December, 2006.

Good morning BLOOD CHALLENGE Co-ordinators,

Thank you for your efforts in promoting the 28th annual Summer Blood Challenge to your organisations, we have just ticked past the third week of the challenge with some great results. However, we are about 150 donations down on the same time as last year, so if you haven't given the challenge a plug within your organisation we would be very appreciative if you could give it a kick start over the coming weeks.

Who's doing well?
Again we have strong support from our emergency service supporters with the CFA and Victoria Police sending in donors by the truckload. And this on top of one of the busiest fire seasons this state has ever seen!

The Scouts and Rovers are also lighting up the table, even though they have a jumbo sized Jamboree just around the corner. Of course the Motorcycle and Scooter riders age also showing their true colours with a fast start, and Bicycle Victoria is keeping pace - just a short sprint away from the top of the 2006/07 table. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are again leading the new donor charge, and may take out that prestigious prize again this year!

Keep up the good work everyone, some organisations are yet to register a donation so we look forward to seeing you and your workmates over the coming months.

Christmas & New Years Eve


The Blood Service are running some special sessions over Christmas and New years to help keep supply up over the holiday period. Our opening hours and a list of our venues can be found on our new website at www.donateblood.com.au Please call us on 13 14 95 to make an appointment, we'd love to see you.

Monday 11th December, 2006

BOGUS TALE OF BIKIE TERRORISTS DOES DAMAGE

A Crikey story on September 29, 2006, headed "OMCGs: the real, lurking Australian terrorist threat" did a lot of damage.

It damaged the credibility of people working for motorbike & scooter safety. It damaged the reputations of those who choose to ride rather than drive. One angry car driver in 100,000 is enough to get one of us killed. It damaged the average cop's reputation for fairness in enforcement and sound evidence. The OMCGs tale was clumsy propaganda.

It was written by "a serving police officer with covert investigative duties." A bit difficult to verify the author's claims. We are not told what force he/she works for. I doubt the Victoria Police PR unit will want to take credit for this penmanship. "The terrorist threat is very real and it lives just around the corner. It is that 'rough diamond', that annual participant in the charity Toy Run, that 'harmless' character who is sticking a needle in your child's arm

and supplying the truckie that wipes out your mate's family on the highway. Also, increasingly he is your accountant or lawyer."

It reminds me of similar slander in Readers Digest I think. The numbers and locations have been updated but this tale has done the rounds. The original supposedly came from the FBI in the USA during their war on drugs a decade or more ago. Regardless of who our covert cop is, if Crikey substituted the riders in his story for members of an ethnic or religious group there would be serious consequences.

In any community there are good and bad. The very good are a minority, so are the very bad. There's around a million Australians with bike licences so the "…around 3500 hard core…" bikies represents point 0035%! of our community. The vast majority of Australian riders are ordinary people, a cross section of society. Motorbike & scooter riders' greater involvement in community service than many groups is probably more because of the image imposed on them than because they are all sweethearts. There are more than 50 TOY RUNS across the country. TOY RUNS are manpower intensive. Most of them could not happen without motorcyclists and police working together. Police have an image problem too and the covert cop does none of us any favours.

The bloke who asked me to write this is Neale Brumby. He's clean cut, 49, a rider all his life. He publishes a Harley mag in Melbourne called Heavy Duty. He's happily married with four kids. No one in his family is into drugs. Brumby told me. "I have had the bad bikie crap all my life. I'd love to see someone from Crikey on stage at this year's Toy Run to tell 10,000 riders they are bikie

terrorists".

I'm 56. Got my first bike in 1967. Motorbikes have been my life ever since. I've organised 21 Melbourne Toy Runs for the Salvos and a similar number of Blood Challenges benefiting the Red Cross. Got an OAM for it. Hate needles. Don't do drugs. I have no criminal record. I'm a lobbyist; I write and do some consulting work, currently for Honda. I've been on numerous road safety committees.

Through my work I've had to mix with both police and traditional motorcycle club members. I've met some great people. Generally, both groups have treated me with respect. Some years ago I was on the Road Safety Reference Group at VicRoads. A police officer was leaving. After the meeting I wished him luck and asked him what his future held. He said loudly, in a room full of people, that he was going to the drug squad to deal with the other 51% of my mates.

But I don't blame all police for that officer's negative view of my world and I don't think we should be blamed for having a lifestyle that has a negative image imposed on it. Crikey's covert cop has damaged both the motorcycle community and police services with this anti-bikiepropaganda. Cops/police and bikies/riders are mostly good Australians and they don't deserve the covert cop's bogus tale.

Damien Codognotto OAM

MRA Life Member.

Ulysses Club 21208.

Saturday 9th December, 2006

Letter to the Editor.

The summer began with a tragic jump in road deaths and a frightening fire threat. The coming festive season will be heartbreaking for too many Victorians.

The festive season is also a time of drought at the blood bank. Regular donors go on holiday, some fight fires. Blood is always in demand for long-term illness, operations and the victims of industrial and domestic accidents, but the demand for blood rises with the annual rise in road
trauma.

Our firefighters are also the State's biggest blood donor group. These ordinary heroes are going to be very busy this fire season. It's all connected. Bushfires, road crashes, blood shortages.

Most of us can't fight bushfires but there are two things each of us can do to support our firefighters and reduce the heartache over the Christmas / New Year break.

The easiest is to be safer on the road - on wheels or on foot, pay attention, turn off the phone, take that corner at the recommended speed, look both ways before crossing, don't drink and drive and so on. The injury you don't sustain or inflict means less strain on emergency services that support our firefighters and less drain on our blood banks.

The second easiest thing is to give blood. Most of us can do that. Please call 13 14 05 to find out what it takes and book in. If a lot of us make a small effort, we can achieve big things.

Damien Codognotto

NUDE BIKERS TV AD!

Motorbike & scooter riders across Australia have been asked to contact their local MPs and their TV station program managers to get these community service announcements some air time. The NSW Motorcycle Council has done a brilliant job producing a driver awareness ad that will save lives.

Victoria has fallen behind in terms of two-wheel safety. With the summer holidays the road toll climbs. These CSAs will make drivers more aware of other road users and that makes them safer. Safer drivers benefit all road users, not just motorbike & scooter riders, bicyclists and pedestrians.

Damien Codognotto OAM

MRAA Life Member.

Ulysses Club 21208.

Mobile: 0419 846 855.

30/10/2006

Media Release.

DRIVER AWARENESS CAMPAIGN LONG OVERDUE.

Brilliant driver awareness TV campaign. Talk about humanising bikies. I'm sending this video link to all Victorian Members of Parliament, members of the Victorian Motorcycle Council (VMAC) and my whole email list.

I'm asking everyone who reads this to look at the videos and pass the links on.Twenty five years ago Victoria led the way in motorbike & scooter safety. Today, with this campaign and the Motorcycle Awareness Week including the RIDE TO WORK DAY, the NSW Motorcycle Council has beaten anything we ever did.

The Victorian Government should hang its' head in shame as bike casualties in this State rise. Even with the TAC antibike tax Victoria hasn't even come close to this NSW motorbike & scooter safety initiative.

Since most bike casualties are caused by car driver error, I'm sure this campaign will reduce road trauma. And, increasing driver awareness of other road users makes ALL road users safer.

Great effort. Congratulations to all concerned.

Damien Codognotto

OAMMRAA Life Member.

Ulysses Club 21208.

03 9846 8621.

From: "Guy Stanford" Sent: Friday, October 27, 2006 3:30 PM

Subject: Motorcycle Awareness Week

Heads UP !! Motorcycle Council of NSW is releasing a new video series on Motorcycle Awareness. Right now. It's a serious message in a fun package. For more detail on Motorcycle Awareness Week, see our website

http://www.mccofnsw.org.au/a/13.html

With motorcycle sales bigger than ever (30% increase in last 12 months!), we are asking car drivers to look twice, especially at intersections.

These are typically severe impacts, amounting to over a third or nearly half of all motorcycle crashes. The adverts carry the tag line "What do we have to do to get noticed?" We have created a download site so you can distribute the link, rather than the entire video.

www.pleaselooktwice.com

Enjoy! Distribute the link to non-riders !

Guy Stanford

MCC of NSW

Mobile: 0417 661 827.

03/10/2006

MEDIA RELEASE.

MOTORCYCLE RALLY AT PARLIAMENT HOUSE.

Motorbike & scooter riders will assemble in front of Parliament House in Melbourne at 1 pm on Tuesday, October 3, 2006. MPs will address the assembly. Riders will be encouraged to contact their MP after the rally. The rally will last an hour.

Riders are angry at the Bracks Government's treatment of the motorcycle community.

Key issues are:

1. The Premier's broken promise to stop wire rope barriers on Victorian roads because they are dangerous. The true cost to the taxpayer of short-lived, imported wire rope barriers. The rising number of casualties at wire rope barrier sites.

2. Abolishing the TAC's $53.90 per bike, per year antibike tax and replacing it with a budget similar to the $7 million + a year for bicycle safety and facilities. When pollution, traffic congestion and productivity are serious issues this Government enforces a discriminatory tax instead of encouraging environmentally friendly vehicles. More than 280,000 Victorians are licenced to ride. Scooter sales are booming, up 64% on 2005.

3. Bike licence reform. a) Learner Approved Motorcycles as in SA and NSW. b) Lower licence age. c) Small, auto scooters on a car licence or permit as interstate and overseas.

4. Motorbikes & scooters to be included in the planning process. Bike numbers have been steadily increasing through the 1990s and are now risingdramatically but riders were removed from the State's transport strategy and planning systems.

Free, secure parking, particularly at public transport hubs & terminuses and in CBD dead space, is urgently required.

Candidate Bill Pemberton will speak for the Greens.Member for Benalla, Dr Bill Sykes, will speak for the Nationals. Member for Soth West Coast, Dr Denis Napthine, will speak for the Liberals. Premier Bracks was invited to speak for the Government or to delegate but he has not replied. Leader of the Opposition, Ted Baillieu, will attend with Shadow Transport Minister, Terry Mulder. Speakers for riders will be Russell Wattie (Mobile: 0418 573 006) from north east Victoria and Clive Larkman ( larkman@larkmannurseries.com.au ) from Melbourne's eastern suburbs.

The organiser is Damien Codognotto OAM.

Tel: 03 9846 8621. Mobile: 0419 846 855.

29/09/2006

This isn't spam. It's about an unfair motorbike & scooter tax with a bitof humour. Not interested?

Delete now. If you want off my email list please say so. If you think this email campaignis important please get others to send an early Christmas message to the Premier too.

Since Premier Bracks does not seem to have a sense of humour where riders are concerned you can delete the attachment.

*****************************************

THE HERALD SUN CARS GUIDE THIS FRIDAY. On October 3, 2006, at 1 pm there will be a PROTEST RALLY at ParliamentHouse in Melbourne.

The Victorian Premier, Steve Bracks, has been invitedbut he hasn't replied. So he gets the message that the $54 TAC tax shouldbe abolished, and for those who can't make the rally, we are running an email campaign right up to the November 25 State election.

Below is a form email. Make any alterations you think are appropriate and send it to:steve.bracks@parliament.vic.gov.au

cc it to:terence.mulder@parliament.vic.gov.au and denis.napthine@parliament.vic.gov.au .

Subject: AXE THE TAX BRAX.

Premier Bracks,

Your unfair TAC tax on the motorbike & scootercommunity has failed its' road safety aims. Bike casualties rise while you grimly reap the tax and increase the restrictions.

You entirely removedmotorbikes & scooters from the Victorian Transport Strategy. You fail to fund the Victorian Motorcycle Advisory Council (VMAC).

Give VMAC the resources from general revenue and the authority it needs to reduce rider casualties statewide. Riders are legitimate, taxpaying road users whodeserve recognition and funding comparable to bicyclists ($7.2 millionplus each year). Motorbikes & scooters benefit everyone. They help solvepollution, congestion and productivity problems. 280,000 plus Victorianshold a licence to ride a motorcycle. That number is growing steadily.

We won't go away. We all vote.

If the discriminatory $53.90 TAC tax stays your Government will not get my vote at the November 25, 2006, election.

Name ........................... Post code ...................

14/09/2006

Victorian Lower House MP, Victor Perton, tried to move an amendment to Victorian road law last night. The amendment makes road safety sense.

It exempts larger learner riders from the 260cc restriction on first year novi

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