ATLANTA (May 7, 2010)—The Georgia Senate has dropped a provision in a state bill that would have banned retread tires from state emergency response vehicles.
The bill, Georgia House Bill 981, sets new standards for Highway Patrol and emergency vehicles. It passed the Georgia House of Representatives 159-3 on Feb. 18. The legislation would have banned retreads from emergency vehicles even as it required all state agencies, departments and authorities to either buy retreads or subscribe to a retread service. The latter provision remains in the bill.
The Tire Retread & Repair Information Bureau first sounded the alarm to retreaders in March about HB 981. The Tire Industry Association and the Rubber Manufacturers Association then contacted members of the Georgia Senate Public Safety Committee about the damage the anti-retread provision would cause. Georgia retreaders led by former Georgia State Sen. Jim Whitehead, of Jim Whitehead Tire Service Inc. in Augusta, Ga., crafted an amendment to rescind the anti-retread provision. That amendment had passed both the Senate and the House by April 29, TIA said.
“This was truly a team effort,” said Paul Fiore, TIA director of government and business relations. Allowing the bill to stand, Fiore said, would have led to even more punitive legislation in other states based on fear and misinformation about retreads.