Lawmakers may lift Sunday motorcycle sales ban

2012-01-12T17:15:00Z Lawmakers may lift Sunday motorcycle sales banBy Dan Carden, (317) 637-9078
January 12, 2012 5:15 pm  • 

INDIANAPOLIS | If a Hoosier wants to buy a motorcycle from a dealer on a Sunday, he or she must buy all the parts separately and walk them to the service area for assembly before being able to ride off.

State Sen. Ed Charbonneau, R-Valparaiso, thinks that is ridiculous.

Charbonneau is sponsor of Senate Bill 192, which ends the state's ban on buying, selling or trading motorcycles on Sundays.

"It just doesn't make any sense to me that we don't give our motorcycle dealers the option to decide when to be open," Charbonneau said. "It's an economic development issue, it's a job creation issue, it's a tax revenue issue for the state."

Some region motorcycle dealerships are open Sundays and sell merchandise or service motorcycles, but they are prohibited from selling an intact motorcycle.

Charbonneau said after New Jersey recently ended its Sunday sale ban, motorcycle purchases increased 20 percent.

The Senate's commerce committee took testimony on Charbonneau's legislation Thursday. A committee vote is expected later this month.

Most committee members, including state Sen. Jean Leising, R-Oldenburg, seemed ready to approve the proposal.

"We've got to promote this economy, man" Leising said. "This is crazy."

In a letter to the committee, Tom Hartman, chairman of the Motorcycle Dealers Association of Indiana, said his group opposes Sunday sales because most dealers want the day off.

State Sen. Brent Waltz, R-Greenwood, said the state shouldn't be helping those dealers limit competition by telling other businesses when they can operate.

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