September 2006

Click here to view the newsletter as it was originally printed.

Zoned Out

Hobbyists Counter Unfair State and Local Zoning Ordinances

The SEMA Action Network has become increasingly concerned about the many states and localities attemp-ting to legislate strict property or zoning laws that include restrictions on inoperable automobile bodies and parts. In addition to several city and county proposals, state lawmakers in Hawaii, Illinois, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio and West Virginia have considered legislation this year that would have established restrictions on these so-called backyard restoration projects.

“We believe that clear legal distinctions must be drawn between an owner using private property as a dumping ground and a vehicle enthusiast working to maintain, restore or construct a vehicle,” said SEMA Vice President of Government Affairs Steve McDonald.

Often, removal of these vehicles from private property is enforced through local nuisance laws with minimal or no notice to the owner. Elected officials develop these initiatives based on the notion that inoperable vehicles are eyesores that adversely affect property values or constitute health hazards. Many such laws are drafted broadly, allowing for the confiscation of vehicles being repaired or restored. For the purposes of these proposed bills, “inoperable vehicles” are most often defined as those on which the engine, wheels or other parts have been removed, altered, damaged or allowed to deteriorate so that the vehicle cannot be driven.

An active group of enthusiasts will find that in some cases it will be possible to successfully kill these proposals directly. However, in other instances it may be necessary to negotiate reasonable and fair compromise legislation. In these cases, enthusiast groups might consider supporting legislation that permits the outdoor storage of a motor vehicle if the vehicle is maintained in such a manner as not to constitute a health hazard. In addition, these vehicles could be located away from public view, or screened by means of a suitable fence, trees, shrubbery, opaque covering or other appropriate means. This would help appease those who believe these vehicles to be eyesores.

To help in this effort, SEMA has produced model legislation to provide such safeguards for hobbyists to work on collector vehicles on private property and establish reasonable provisions that vehicles be located out of public view. Click here to download a copy of the bill from the SAN website.

In working to present this issue to your elected officials, our experience indicates that it will be helpful to make the following preparations:

  • Build a coalition of interested clubs, businesses and local organizations.
  • Host positive and proactive meetings with city, county and state officials to address the issue.
  • Propose fair alternative language that benefits both the hobbyist and the community (e.g. screened from ordinary public view by means of a suitable fence, trees, shrubbery, etc.)
  • Garner support from local media.
  • Be persistent in your efforts.

For additional assistance in pursing the SEMA model in your area, please contact the SEMA Government Affairs Office at 202/783-6007, ext. 39 or by e-mail at san@sema.org.


Missouri Enacts Broad-Based Emissions Test Exemption: SAN-backed legislation to exempt vehicles manufactured prior to 1996 from the emission inspection process was passed by the Missouri Legislature and signed into law by Governor Matt Blunt. Under the new law, motor vehicles manufactured prior to 1996 will only be subject to a gas cap pressure test as part of the state’s biennial safety inspection program.  In addition, newer motor vehicles which have not been previously titled and registered will be exempted from emissions inspections for the four-year period following their model year of manufacture provided they are driven less than 40,000 miles for the first two years. All motor vehicles driven less than 12,000 miles between the biennial safety inspection are also exempt.

Oregon Adopts Emissions Exemptions for Specialty Cars: The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has adopted new Low Emission Vehicle (LEV) requirements for 2009 model year manufactured vehicles. The adopted LEV standards will exempt newly built specialty vehicles from the state’s permanent rules requiring new motor vehicles to meet California’s tighter motor vehicle emissions standards. The exemptions are a product of weeks of consultation between the DEQ and the SAN. The new regulations will exempt assembled vehicles, replicas, street rods, and custom vehicles from Oregon’s low-emission vehicle (LEV) standards that take effect in 2009 provided that these vehicles are used only for occasional transportation, exhibitions, club activities, parades, tours, etc., but not for general daily transportation.


Congress Crafts Compromise To Allow Off-Roading Within Wilderness: The U.S. House of Representatives approved three measures that would create over 677,000 acres of new wilderness areas in California, Idaho and Oregon. Although off-highway vehicle (OHV) use is traditionally restricted in wilderness areas, provisions were included in the three bills to establish adjacent or nearby areas which would be open to OHV use. This would include inclusion of some “cherry-stem” roads within the wilderness areas to allow continued motorized access to existing roads and trails.

Under this measure, 275,000 acres in five Northern California counties (Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, Mendocino and Napa) would be designated as wilderness. As part of a compromise, approximately 79,000 acres would be set aside as recreation management areas for off-road vehicles and there would also be cherry-stem roads within the wilderness areas.

House lawmakers also approved legislation that would create three wilderness areas in Central Idaho totaling almost 300,000 acres. Another 130,000 acres that had been set aside as “wilderness study areas” would now be opened to off-road use. The legislation also authorizes the creation of a state motorized park. The House also approved a separate measure which would increase the Mount Hood Wilderness Area in Oregon by 41 percent. Included in the bill were provisions for converting old forest roads into new recreational trails. All three bills have been sent to the U.S. Senate for consideration.

“Wilderness legislation is consequential since it potentially denies access to off-roaders,” said SAN Director Jason Tolleson. “The SAN supports land use decisions that allow local communities and government authorities to participate in the decision-making process. Within that context, the SAN supports compromise approaches on wilderness areas that balance the need to preserve access to appropriate motorized recreation while protecting some of our nation’s natural wonders.”

California Forests: The Road Stops Here: Governor Arnold Schwar-zenegger petitioned the federal government to set aside 4.4 million acres of national forest in California as “roadless.”  The petition is in response to a rule that gives states until November 2006 to request the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) to open areas previously closed under the Clinton Administration’s so-called “roadless rule.” The rule covers nearly 58.5 million acres of national forests and grasslands, mostly in western states.

The rule established a process for considering state recommendations on which roadless areas should remain closed and which should be opened to logging, mining or other commercial ventures. If a state does not petition the USFS to make such recommendations, roadless areas would then be subject to the management plans of each forest. While some of those plans allow for long-range development, agency officials have noted the majority of roadless areas would be protected under current plans.

The California petition seeks to prohibit development more than 20 percent of the state’s 20.7 million acres in 18 national forests. California joins New Mexico, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia to submit a petition under the new rule.

The SAN has previously commented to the USFS that the state petitioning process could be an opportunity to correct inaccurate roadless designations and include uninventoried routes well known to users but that do not appear on current USFS maps. These routes could be closed if located in areas deemed “roadless.”

Lawmakers Support SAN’s Criticism of Motorized Recreation Proposal: The U.S. House Resources Committee held a hearing to discuss the latest round of proposed changes to the National Park Service’s (NPS) management policies. The document, which serves as a handbook for park superintendents and other NPS officials, has been the focus of attention by both recreation groups and environmental organizations since the Bush Administration released its first proposed changes in 2005. The proposal envisioned more recreational opportunities for motorized recreation.

At issue in the hearing was a second draft proposal released by the NPS last month. Critics, including the SAN and the BlueRibbon Coalition (BRC), argue that the revised version drastically shifts the balance from “visitor enjoyment” to a strict mandate for “resource preservation.” These supporters of recreational access, including the use of OHVs in designated parks, claim that the latest proposal is inconsistent with the original intent of Congress in establishing the national park system in 1916.

Another area of concern in the latest proposal was in regards to noise, which directs park officials to eliminate all unnatural noise whenever possible. This broad definition would be a direct threat to recreational activities including OHVs and boating. Furthermore, areas “possessing” wilderness features or deemed “suitable” for wilderness status would be managed as wilderness even if the area is not formally recommended, proposed or designated wilderness. This could preclude OHV activities, snowmobiling and other motorized recreation.

While the latest draft does not directly prohibit OHV access, the SAN is disappointed by the shift away from balanced recreation opportunities within our national parks. Furthermore, the SAN disagrees with these implied directives regarding recreational access and favors a process in which individual park officials use public input and available scientific data to resolve access issues.

NPS officials intend to release the final version of the management policy later this summer.

Calling All Car Clubs!

Entry Forms Available September 5 for annual Eagle One Golden Rule Awards

Eagle One has announced the availability of entry forms for its 14th annual Golden Rule Awards. Cash donations and products for fund-raising purposes will be awarded to car clubs in four regions judged to have conducted the most outstanding community service program in their region during 2006.

Entry forms can be downloaded at www.eagleone.com or by calling 818/501-1445. Deadline for entries will be December 31, 2006.

Cash donations of $750 by Eagle One and associate sponsor Valvoline will be awarded to each of the four winning clubs. Winners and runners-up will also receive a generous supply of Eagle One’s Bucket-Free Car Wash, Wax As-U-Dry, NanoWax, All Wheel & Tire Cleaner and Tire Shine, as well as Valvoline MaxLife motor oil, for fund-raising purposes. Winners will be notified by January 31, 2007.

Eagle One products are part of the Valvoline family of brands.


You’re My Boy, Blue

1964 Pontiac Bonneville Convertible
Neil Kiracofe
Winchester, Virginia

Sometimes when we lose the ones we love the most, we’re lucky enough to get to hang on to something that reminds us of them and the things they loved to do. Nowhere is this more apparent than with Neil Kiracofe’s 1964 Bonneville Convertible. Neil’s uncle, a classic car fanatic and collector, was constantly buying and selling classic cars. When his uncle passed away in 1999, he left Neil (who at the time was only 17) two beautifully restored classic cars: a 1968 Camaro, and this 1964 Bonneville.

“The Bonneville was purchased from a gentleman out of Ohio in 1998, and when my uncle got it, it was a non-original dark blue,” said Kiracofe. The car was then returned to its original color by Diehl Wilson, a fantastic local painter and owner/driver of the Virginia Giant monster truck. As if the car wasn’t gorgeous enough, it also happens to be a numbers-matching car, and is nearly all-original. But make no mistake, this car and the Camaro are not garage queens. When there is time, the cars are driven and occasionally used in local parades and events. Although, sadly, his uncle never got to enjoy this car like he should have, Neil has secured a permanent space for it in his garage and, in addition, has inherited the love for all things automotive as well.

Drivetrain: 389 CI V-8; Hydramatic automatic transmission
Suspension: Stock
Wheels/Tires: Stock
Exterior: Returned to original blue with dark blue top


Each month Driving Force will feature members of the State Automotive Enthusiast Leadership Caucus. The SEMA-supported caucus is a bi-partisan group of state lawmakers whose common thread is a love and appreciation for automobiles. Here are its newest members:


Representative Richard Cebra


Delegate Don Dwyer


Representative Alan Brown



September 1-3, Birmingham
30th Anniversary Stampede
Sponsor: Mustang Club of America
Information: www.mustang.org or 770/957-7501


September 8-10, Flagstaff
2nd Annual Route 66 Days
Sponsor: Route 66 Car Club
Information: www.route66carclub.com or 928/779-0898


September 3, Long Beach (Queen Mary Seawalk Plaza)
Cadillac Concours D'Elegance/Car Lovers Celebration
Sponsor: Cadillac Club International Consortium
Information: 951/845-5916

September 10, Belmont Shore
17th Annual Belmont Shore Car Show
Sponsor: Bay City Rodders
Information: 562/946-9800

September 22-24, Cayucos
San Jose 40 Fest
Sponsor: San Jose 40’s
Information: 408/398-8736

September 24, Long Beach
Mustangs at the Queen Mary
Sponsor: Beach City Mustang Club
Information: www.bcmc.net or 562/498-2262


September 16-17, Arvada
Show in the Park
Sponsor: Colorado English Motoring Conclave
Information: gfgv12e@aol.com or 303/477-0189


September 30, Braselton
Street Masters Benefit Show
Sponsor: Street Masters Car Club of Athens, GA
Information: 706/797-3626


September 9-10, St. Charles
Fierorama 11
Sponsor: Northern Illinois Fiero Enthusiasts
Information: paulv@xnet.com or 630/983-6434

September 10, St. Charles
36th Annual Midwest Antique Car Show
Sponsor: Model T Ford Club International, Midwest Chapter
Information: www.midwestswap.com or 847/669-3848

September 15-16, Galena
Quad State 2006
Sponsor: Illinois Valley Olds Chapter, Oldsmobile Club of America
Information: quadstates06@hotmail.com or 708/444-7625
September 16, Fairfield
Fall Fun Fest Car Show
Information: 618/842-3169

September 17, Chicago
Chicago Gearhead’s Picnic and Show
Sponsor: Chicago Gearheads
Information: 312/305-6221

September 17, Oak Brook Terrace
9th Annual Pontiac & GMC All Pontiac/
GMC Car Show
Sponsor: Pontiac-Oakland Club International, Illinois Chapter
Information: 815/838-7956


August 30-September 4, Indianapolis
Gathering of Gassers
Information: 800/884-6472

September 22-24, Indianapolis
25th Annual Advance Auto Parts Fall 4-Wheel Jamboree Nationals
Sponsor: Special Events
Information: www.familyevents.com


September 4, Iowa Falls
10th Annual Labor Day Scenic City Show
Sponsor: Scenic City Cruisers
Information: www.sceniccitycarshow.com or 641/648-4824

September 8-10, Greenfield
44th Annual Early Wheels of Iowa
Information: www.earlywheelsofiowa.com or 515/961-3657

September 17, Dubuque
Camp Albrecht Acres Benefit Car Show
Sponsor: Tri-State Auto Club
Information: 563/557-1081


September 1-3, Kansas City
5th Mid-Western Nationals
Sponsor: Goodguys
Information: www.good-guys.com or
925/838 9876

September 16, Tuttle Creek
2nd Kansas Krawl
Sponsor: Trail Krawlers 4x4 Club
Information: 785/633-8625


September 9, Columbia
The All-Chevy Car Show
Sponsor: Maryland Camaro club
Information: www.mdcamaroclub.com or 301/854-2014

September 22-24, Garrett County Fairgrounds
Strut Your Stuff Shine and Show 2006
Information: www.strutyourstuffcarshow.com or 240/580-0937


September 16, Norwood
5th Cadillac Village Show
Sponsor: Cadillac LaSalle Club, N.E. Region
Information: 617/288-6626


September 15-17, Kalamazoo
Street Rod Nationals North
Sponsor: NSRA
Information: www.nsra-usa.com or 901/452-4030


September 15-17, Springfield
18th Annual O’Reilly Auto Parts Fall Street Machine Nationals
Sponsor: Special Events
Information: www.familyevents.com

September 22-24, Kansas City
LightningFest 4
Sponsor: National Lightning Owners Club
Information: www.LightningFest06.com

September 30, Warrenton
8th Annual Charity Car Show
Sponsor: American Roadhouse Car Club
Information: www.americanroadhouse.org or 636/946-4389


September 24, Folsom
Fall Memorial Car Show and Toy Run
Sponsor: Cruisin’ Classics Auto Club
Information: www.crusinclassics.com or 609/561-2581


September 22-24, Los Lunas
NMCCC Annual Swap Meet
Sponsor: New Mexico Council of Car Clubs
Information: oldcarnut1932@earthlink.net or 505/884-7912

September 30-October 1, Edgewood
Edgewood Harvest Festival
Information: onestacksmack@att.net or 505/832-1503


September 8-10, Lake George
18th Annual Adirondack Nationals
Sponsor: Albany Rods and Kustoms
Information: www.adirondacknationals.com or 518/821-6237

September 10, Wampsville
46th Annual Antique Car Show and Flea Market
Sponsor: Mohican Model A Ford Club
Information: www.28-31ford.org or 315/736-1928

September 15-17, Lake Placid
Volvo Club of America Midwest National Meet
Sponsor: Volvo Club of America
Information: www.vcoa.org/events/2006-east_coast_national/ or 816/891-8900

September 15-17, Rhinebeck
14th East Coast Nationals
Sponsor: Goodguys
Information: www.good-guys.com or 925/838 9876


September 4, Mt. Vernon
Newton’s 4th Annual Car Show
Information: 740/392-9921


September 9-10, Sandy
Sandy Oktoberfest Car Show
Sponsor: OCOVA
Information: 503/668-4096


September 24, Hershey
21st Annual All Oldsmobile Fall Meet
Sponsor: Oldsmobile Club of America, Blue/Gray Chapter
Information: 717/277-0789

September 27-October 1, Carlisle
31st Annual Fall Carlisle
Information: www.carsatcarlisle.com or 717/243-7855


September 2, Myrtle Beach
Wheels at the Beach
Sponsor: Myrtle Beach Car Club
Information: 843/650-3098


September 22-24, Mitchell
2nd Annual Outkasts Car Club Cruise In and Hot Rod Show
Sponsor: Outkasts Car Club
Information:  or 605/996-7203


September 2-3, Millington
3rd Annual All Star Event
Information: 901/377-5575

September 22-24, Nashville
27th Annual Music City Convention
Sponsor: Mid-Tenn Classic Chevy Club
Information: 615/824-7522

September 23, Pulaski
23rd Annual Antique Car Show
Sponsor: P.A.C.E. Car Club
Information: www.pacecarclub.com or 931/363-2585


September 9, Houston
15th United Way Bud Classic
Information: Raymond.buchman@anheuser-busch.com or 713/675-2311

September 16, Seguin
7th Annual Open Classic Car Show
Sponsor: POCI, South Central Texas Chapter
Information: 830/438-2878

September 29 - October 1, Fort Worth
14th Lone Star Nationals
Sponsor: Goodguys
Information: www.good-guys.com or 925/838 9876


September 22-24, Burlington
Northeast Street Rod Nationals
Sponsor: NSRA
Information: www.nsra-usa.com or 901/452-4030


September 23, Manassas
31st Annual Edgar Rohr Memorial Antique Car Meet
Sponsor: AACA, Bull Run Region
Information: www.aaca.org/bullrun or 804/338-1404


September 10, Saukville
Saukville in September Car, Truck and Cycle Show
Sponsor: Rods-n-Relics Car Club
Information: www.rodsnrelics.org

September 18, Sheboygan
21st Annual Riverfront Custom Car Show
Sponsor: Kettle Moraine Corvette Club
Information: www.oopcd.com/kmcc or 262/965-5255

Early October 2006 Events


October 1, Burbank
Throttlers 2006 Car Show
Sponsor: MTFCA, San Fernando Valley Chapter
Information: 818/361-0645

October 1, La Palma Park
37th Annual All ford Picnic and Car Show
Sponsor: Early Ford V-8 Club of American, Southern CA Region #11
Information: 949/675-4234

October 1, Long Beach
(Queen Mary Seawalk Plaza)
Cadillac Concours D'Elegance/Car Lovers Celebration
Sponsor: Cadillac Club International Consortium
Information: 951/845-5916


October 1, West Lebanon
Car Show, Swap Meet and Nostalgia Drags Sponsor: Capital Area Rods
Information: www.capitalarearods.com or 518/872-2344

Attention Car Clubs, Event Organizers and Enthusiasts!

Put SAN on Your Mailing List!

We’d like to know what’s going on with SEMA Action Network clubs and enthusiasts across the country; what charity events you’re involved in; when and where the rod runs, car shows, trail rides, rallies and tech meetings are held; and what legislative and regulatory issues concern club members and individual enthusiasts.

One of the best ways to keep us abreast of what’s going on and what’s important to the vehicle hobbies nationwide is for us to receive your club newsletters and updates. Please consider placing SEMA on your mailing list. Send correspondence to: SEMA Action Network, 1317 F Street, N.W., Suite 500, Washington, D.C. 20004-1105. Or by e-mail at san@sema.org.