The U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee has passed the Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports (RPM) Act with a vote of 33 to 20 with bipartisan support. The bill (H.R. 350) is now eligible for consideration on the floor of the House of Representatives.
The RPM Act clarifies that it is legal under federal law to manufacture, sell, distribute and install race parts that modify the emissions system of a motor vehicle that is used solely for racing.
SEMA president and CEO Chris Kersting testified November 14 before the Senate Clean Air Subcommittee. The bill is now pending before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.
The RPM Act addresses a problem that did not exist prior to 2015 when the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a proposed rule stating that it was illegal to convert street vehicles into racing vehicles if the emission system is taken out-of-compliance from its stock configuration. It would also make it illegal to sell any emissions-related parts for those vehicles. This interpretation was inconsistent with 45 years of previous agency policy, practice and industry understanding of the law as it applies to dedicated race vehicles.
Although the EPA withdrew the proposed rule, the agency still asserts it has authority under the Clean Air Act to regulate emissions modifications to converted vehicles used solely for competition. The RPM Act simply confirms that Congress never intended for race vehicles and parts to be regulated under the Clean Air Act.
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