R. I. Motorcycle Association

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2020 legislative session

Our plan for 2020 is to pass legislation that includes a credit on taxes for trade ins. We need your help. Please sign our "Trade In Petition"

In 2018 Helmet Bill was held in committee after Rima testified in Committee hearing.

No Helmet Bill was introduced in 2019.

Other Motorcycle Issues:

LEFT TURN ON RED for motorcycles:

What is to be done about traffic signals that ignore motorcycles?

What happens when you wait and wait and the light won’t turn green?

Traffic signal sensors that don't detect motorcycles (because they are weight activated) are one of the dangers of riding that most people in cars never become aware of while sitting at red lights. If you encounter one of these signals, take note of where it is and call to have it corrected. The numbers are listed below.


 Another danger is pot holes. Make a call! Make a difference! Report the lights and potholes to Rhode Island Road’s Dispatch number: 401-222-2378, or RIDOT’s Customer Service Office: 401-222-2450. You can also email: dot.customerservice@dot.ri.gov


If a traffic signal does not respond to the presence of your motorcycle please call the RI DOT for state roads or the town DPW for town roads. To determine if the signal is on a State road or Town road check this map: http://dot.ri.gov/about/maproom/ 

RI State Roads/Highways: TMC/Maintenance Dispatch line: 401-222-2378, or RIDOT's Customer Service office: 401-222-2450, or e-mail at dot.customerservice@dot.ri.gov 

For Town Roads: http://www.ri.gov/towns/  - this website will link you to all the town websites

Barrington: (401) 247-1900
Bristol DPW: (401) 253-4100
Burrillville - Town Hall: (401) 568-4300 Central Falls DPW: (401) 727-7466, or go online at
http://centralfallsri.us/departments/public-works/  public-works!
Charlestown DPW: (401) 3 64-123 0
Coventry DPW: Roads & Bridges Phone - (401) 822-9110
Cranston DPW - Bureau of Traffic Safety: (401) 780-3204
Cumberland DPW: (401) 728-2400, Ext. 143 (Director), or (401) 723-7251 (Hwy Department)
East Greenwich - Town Hall: (401) 886-8600
East Providence DPW: (401) 435-7701 or online at
Exeter DPW: (401) 295-1983
Foster DPW: (401) 392-9204 or (401) 7025011 (potholes)
Glocester DPW: (401) 568-5540
Hopkington DPW: (401) 377-7790
Jamestown DPW: (401) 423-7225
Johnston DPW: (401) 231-4000
Lincoln DPW: (401) 333-1100
Little Compton DPW: (401) 635-8384
Middletown DPW: (401) 846-2119
Narragansett DPW: (401) 782-0687
New Shoreham DPW: (401) 466-3210
Newport DPS Engineering Division: (401) 845-5842
North Kingstown DPW: (401) 294-3331
North Providence DPW: (401) 233-1440
North Smithfield DPW: (401) 767-2200
Pawtucket DPW: (401) 728-0500 x236 (Director), x214 or x215 (Traffic Engineering), x232, x233, or x260 (General)
Portsmouth DPW: (401) 683-0362 or (401) 683-2866 (Prudence Island)
Providence DPW: (401) 467-7950 or (401) 781- 4044 (Traffic Engineering)
Richmond DPW: (401) 539-8474
Scituate DPW: (401) 647-3366
Smithfield DPW: (401) 233-1034
South Kingstown DPS: (401) 789-9331 ext 250
Tiverton DPW: (401) 625-6760
Warren DPW: (401) 245-0200
Warwick DPW: (401) 738-2000 x6500
West Greenwich DPW: (401) 397-6110 or (401) 392-3800 (Town Hall)
West Warwick DPW: (401) 822-9225
Westerly DPW: (401) 348-2538
Woonsocket DPW: (401) 767-9209 or (401) 767-9210

Listed below are some of the issues that RIMA has been involved with in the past:


 2014 General Assembly issues we worked on three major issues:

1)            Trade-in taxes on your new bike. You trade in a car for a new one and

pay the tax on the difference of value. Bikes were excluded from this.

Under the proposed legislation, if you trade in your current bike for

$10,000 and buy a new bike for $20,000, you would only be required to pay sales tax on the difference between these values (i.e., $10,000).  As the law is currently written you would be required to pay sales tax on the full $20,000 price of the new motorcycle.


2)            Passenger helmet law. Let's get this repealed this session.  The U.S.

Constitution states that we as Americans have “certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.  Let’s work to regain our Liberty such that motorcycle passengers have the Right to choose whether or not to wear a helmet.


3)            Red Lights:  Have you ever pulled up to a red light and waited as the

other intersections go through multiple cycles, all while the light in front of you remains red?  Often times the sensors for these lights are not sensitive enough to identify the presence of a motorcycle.  RIMA will propose legislation that would make it legal to proceed through the red light after a certain amount of time.

Amendment to RI Statute 31-17

When bodily injury of any person other than the offending operator of any motor vehicle is caused by violation of anothers ROW, the offending operator shall be fined $200

When serious bodily injury of any person other than the offending operator of any motor vehicle is caused by violation of anothers ROW, the offending operator shall be fined $500 and his or her drivers license shall be suspended for a period of three months.

When the death of any person other than the offending operator of any motor vehicle is caused by violation of anothers ROW, the offending operator shall be fined $1000 and his or her drivers license shall be suspended for a period of one year.

Section 31-15-12.1

 A big win has developed for the RIMA. Our Right - of - Way Bill is now law. The Governor has signed our Right of Way Bill, H 5061 into law. Its been a long time coming. We've worked hard to get our message across that the penalties placed against any users that violates the right of way of any other user were not sufficient enough to cause people to take notice.

Be it on your bike, in your car or truck or any type of motor vehicle when someone takes the mind set to violate another's way the fines levied against that individual will no long be small. Now with hefty fines and suspension of licenses in the works maybe some will start taking notice.


Championed by the Rhode Island Motorcycle Association.

Lawmakers gave the nod to special motorcycle parking spots.
Bikers with business to take care of at municipal or state buildings that provide public parking soon won’t have to use a whole auto space to park. Starting next year, they'll get their own special spots, according to a June 12 press release from the State House.
Legislation passed by the Rhode Island General Assembly, and signed into law by the governor, requires that a motorcycle parking plan be established by November of this year for parking areas at state, city or town buildings, and that parking spaces be made available by April 1, 2013. The requirement will not apply to state airport lots.
The motorcycle parking bills were sponsored by Sen. John Tassoni Jr., a Democrat in District 22, Smithfield and North Smithfield, and Rep. Peter John Petrarca, a Democrat serving District 44, Lincoln, Johnston and Smithfield.
Under the new law, the parking plan will provide for motorcycle parking spaces in areas that are adjacent to or within sight of the applicable municipal or state building. Spaces will be designated with appropriate signage, and the parking plan may be revised as situations warrant but must be reviewed at least once every five years.
The number and placement of designated motorcycle parking spaces are to be determined as a result of motorcycle use by employees in those buildings and the input of motorcycle owners and are to be made available from April through November.
The law provides that any unauthorized use of a designated parking space will result in an $85 fine.

Two ways to locate your Legislator.

  • On-Line at www.sec.state.ri.us/vic  Quick and easy.
  • Call 401-222-2357, give your name and address and the Secretary of State’s office can give you all the info.

East Side, M/C Parking Sign 2007
Submitted by Lou.
East Side M/C Parking Sign 2007
Submitted by Lou




Rhode Island General Laws, Section 11-24-1, (1956, as amended), provides that "All persons within the jurisdiction of this state shall be entitled to the full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities and privileges of any place of public accommodation, resort or amusement subject only to the conditions and limitations established by law and applicable alike to all persons." Further, any persons aggrieved by any violation of this statute has the right to petition the Rhode Island Commission on Human Rights to induce compliance. RL Gen. Laws Section 11-24-4 (1956, as amended).

The Supreme Court of the United States has ruled in the case of Cohen v. California, 403 U.S. 15 (1971), that persons have the constitutional right under the First Amendment to wear clothing which displays writing or designs. In addition, the right of an individual to freedom of association has long been recognized and protected by the United States Supreme Court Thus, a person's right to wear the clothing of his choice, as well as his right to belong to any club or organization of his choice is constitutionally protected, and persons or establishments who discriminate on the basis of clothing or club membership may be subject to lawsuit.


State of Rhode Island General Laws

Woonsocket Ordinances
(noise see section 14.5)

Newport Ordinances
(noise see section 8.12.130)

Various City and Town Ordinances, Council Minutes and Agendas-Municode
Central Falls
North Kingstown
South Kingstown
West Warwick

Other Cities and Towns Ordinances, Council Minutes and Agenda, -ClerkBase

Central Falls, RI
Cumberland, RI
East Providence, RI
Exeter, RI
Jamestown, RI
Middletown, RI
Narragansett, RI
Newport, RI
North Providence, RI
Pawtucket, RI
Providence, RI
Tiverton, RI
West Warwick, RI
Westerly, RI
Woonsocket, RI

State of Rhode Island General Assembly

Links to ALL Rhode Island Government Offices


Motor and Other vehicles

 CHAPTER 31-10.1
Special License for Motorcycles, Motor Scooters, and Other Motor Driven Cycles

31-23-13 Muffler

31-45-1 Noise limits

31-22-3 Miscellaneous Rules
Riding on Motorcycles

Where are these Parking Spaces ?

State Funded Rider Education

Available for all eligible applicants. Required for first-time applicants. May waive skills test for successful completion of Rider Education.
May waive knowledge test for successful completion of Rider Education

Eye Protection   Required by law.

Passenger Seat  Required if carrying a passenger.

Passenger Footrests  Required if carrying a passenger.

Mirror  Required by law.

Periodic Safety Inspection  Required by law

50 State Helmet Laws Reviewed


Buddy's letter regarding Voting

The AMA has a page sorted by state with various bills related to Motorcycling.

A compilation of links to studies and reports involving all aspects of highway, auto, and motorcycle safety issues. Thanks to NY Freedom Riders.

     The Education Bill was signed into law by the Governor on July 1. This Bill with the combined efforts of the Rhode Island Motorcycle Association and the very helpful Lobbyist for Harley Davidson will allow outside contractors to offer Rider Education for first time motorcycle licensees. Up until now only the State Community College could offer the mandated Riders Education Program for license purposes.   This was a three year project from its first conception, through its many rewrites and then finally its passing.  


 Louis P. Petrucci Jr.

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