The following is from the SEMA Driving Force newsletter. We feel it’s important to get the word out about this recent law. Here’s the article from the newsletter in it’s entirety-
Is This Heaven? No…It’s Iowa
SEMA Street Rod/Custom Vehicle Signed Into Law in Hawkeye State
The cumbersome and often confusing task of titling and registering a street rod or custom vehicle in Iowa just got a whole lot easier as Governor Chet Culver signed the SEMA Street Rod/Custom Vehicle bill into law. Under the new measure, qualifying vehicles are registered as the same model year that the body of the vehicle resembles.
Sponsored by Iowa State Representative Jim Lykam, who is a member of the State Automotive Enthusiast Leadership Caucus (see Caucus Corner article on p. 4), the bill defines a street rod as an altered vehicle manufactured before 1949 or a vehicle designed to resemble a vehicle manufactured before 1949. The bill also defines a replica vehicle as a reproduction of an originally manufactured vehicle with the substitution or addition of parts to update the vehicle for purposes of safety, performance or reliability.
“Backed by the hard work and perseverance of Representative Lykam and fellow Caucus member Senator Jeff Danielson, we are extremely gratified that Iowa has joined the list of states that recognize street rods and customs as distinct classes of vehicles,” said SEMA Vice President of Government Affairs Steve McDonald. “The new law offers the benefit of also including qualifying replicas and kit cars in these specialty-vehicle titling and registration classifications.”
Under the new law, the owner of a street rod or replica vehicle must self-certify that the vehicle is in compliance with certain equipment specifications and shall pay a $10 registration fee.
The momentum behind the SEMA model continues to spread across the country as Idaho Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter signed into law a version of SEMA-model legislation that creates a state motor-vehicle definition for replica vehicles. The new law allows these vehicles to meet only the equipment and emissions standards in effect for the model year and vehicle being replicated. The new law defines a replica vehicle as a “vehicle made to replicate any passenger car or truck previously manufactured, using metal, fiberglass or other composite materials. Replica vehicles must look like the original vehicle being replicated but may use a more modern drive train.”
State Caucus members in Tennessee were instrumental in having the custom vehicle portion of the bill approved by the legislature and signed into law by Governor Phil Bredesen. Sponsored by Senator Tim Burchett and Representative Mike Williams, the legislation defines a custom-built car as a vehicle that is built for private use and is not constructed by a licensed manufacturer or remanufacturer. Under the bill, kit cars and replica vehicles will be assigned a certificate of title bearing the same model-year designation as the production vehicle it most closely resembles.
“The efforts by these lawmakers clearly demonstrate the benefit of creating relationships between enthusiasts and legislators in enacting hobby-friendly legislation,” added McDonald. “For enthusiasts across the country, building, maintaining and enjoying these vehicles is a favorite pastime. This law represents an opportunity to acknowledge their commitment to the hobby and to protect it for future generations.”
To date the SEMA-model bill has been enacted in various forms in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Virginia and Washington. The bill is currently pending in Delaware, Kansas, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The measure was also introduced and approved by the Wyoming House of Representatives last year. However, given the short legislative session, there was not enough time for the measure to be considered by the Senate. The bill will be reintroduced in 2009.
For more information or to download a copy of the SEMA Street Rod/Custom Vehicle bill, visit www.semasan.com.
Summary of SEMA-Model Street Rod/Custom Vehicle Bill
Defines a street rod as an altered vehicle manufactured before 1949 and a custom vehicle as an altered vehicle manufactured after 1948.
Provides specific registration classes and license plates for street rods and custom vehicles.
Provides that replica vehicles and kit cars will be assigned the same model-year designations as the production vehicles they most closely resemble and allows the use of non-original materials.
Exempts street rods and custom vehicles from periodic vehicle inspections and emissions inspections.
Provides that vehicles titled and registered as street rods and custom vehicles may only be used for occasional transportation, exhibitions, club activities, parades, tours, etc. and not for general daily transportation.
Exempts street rods and custom vehicles from a range of standard equipment requirements.
Allows the use of blue-dot taillights on street rods and custom vehicles.
Comments are welcome.