April ___, 2003
STATEMENT OF OBJECTIONS TO SENATE BILL NO. 460
State of Hawaii
Pursuant to Section 16 of Article III of the Constitution of the State of Hawaii, I am returning herewith without my approval, Senate Bill No. 460, entitled "A Bill for an Act Relating to Dune Buggies."
The purpose of Senate Bill No. 460 is to include dune buggy replica vehicles within the special interest vehicle registration requirements of section 286-26.5, Hawaii Revised Statutes, thereby removing such vehicles from the reconstructed vehicle registration law and eliminating the perceived disparity under the law between dune buggies and other vehicles currently classified as special interest vehicles.
This bill would allow one more category of vehicles to be used on Hawaii roads without compliance with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards or the State's reconstructed vehicle law. These vehicles, for example, would not be required to be equipped with important safety equipment such as seat belts. This bill provides that "[s]eatbelts, bumpers, hoods, door handles, and fenders shall be optional equipment on dune buggy replica vehicles manufactured before 1969, and on dune buggy replica vehicles manufactured after 1968 to resemble a [sic] dune buggy replica vehicles manufactured before 1969." Furthermore, unlike other special interest vehicles in the current statute, the definition of "dune buggy replica vehicle" in the bill does not require that a dune buggy be modified "in a manner that does not adversely affect its safe performance as a motor vehicle or render the vehicle unlawful for use on the public highways." The public's safety should not be sacrificed simply for the sake of eliminating a perceived disparity between these different types of vehicles.
Dune buggies generally are less expensive than most special interest vehicles and are more likely to be driven by young people. For the safety of these young people and the public generally, another category of unsafe vehicles on the public roads should not be permitted.
For the foregoing reasons, I am returning Senate Bill No. 460 without my approval.
Governor of Hawaii