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Updating State Vehicle Code
Mark O’Neill, Media Relations Director
510 S. 31st Street , Camp Hill, PA 17001 , (717) 761-2740 or E-mail
For Immediate Release: August 14, 2012
Farmers Urge General Assembly to Swiftly Move Legislation Updating State Vehicle Code
(Rock Springs, Centre County) – Pennsylvania Farm Bureau (PFB) is urging members of the state General Assembly to pass legislation that would update the state vehicle code to resolve long-standing farm transportation problems when lawmakers return to Harrisburg next month.
With only a limited number of legislative days remaining in 2012, Farm Bureau wants lawmakers to quickly come together to reach a consensus to amend the vehicle code, so the Governor will have an opportunity to consider the legislation before the end of the year. The House and Senate have already demonstrated a willingness to address the concerns of farmers by approving helpful, but different versions of legislation to update obsolete provisions of the vehicle code.
“The reasonable changes to the state vehicle code that we support would allow farmers to move modern pieces of equipment from field to field and field to farm. While newer farm equipment has enabled farmers to increase productivity, especially during the planting and harvest seasons, they are larger than vehicles typically used by farmers 30 years ago,” said PFB President Carl T. Shaffer.
The legislation focuses on increasing the width allowance of a farm implement of husbandry (such as a planter), increasing the distance farm equipment and trucks that are used primarily around the home farm can travel (from 25 miles to 50 miles) and increasing the distance in which a multi-purpose agriculture vehicle, such as a four-wheeler or gator can travel (from two to five miles).
“Farmers often have to travel longer distances to plant and harvest crops on their own farmland as well as rented land. They also are required to travel longer distances to deliver agricultural products or to reach businesses that sell farming supplies,” added Shaffer.
Farm Bureau noted that proposed changes to the vehicle code will require farmers to take extra precautions under certain circumstance.
“Farmers strongly support additional safety measures, which could include extra lighting or a pilot car, that will help ensure the safety of drivers and passengers in other vehicles,” concluded Shaffer.
Pennsylvania Farm Bureau is the state’s largest farm organization with a volunteer membership of more than 55,000 farm and rural families, representing farms of every size and commodity across Pennsylvania.