U.S. Representative Tim Ryan Visits Summit Racing Equipment, Pledges Support for RPM Act

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Congressman Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) made a stop at Summit Racing Equipment on April 11 to express his support of House Resolution 4715, the Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports Act of 2016 (RPM Act). Ryan represents the 13th District, which includes Summit Racing’s Ohio headquarters.

It is completely and totally unacceptable to think you’re going to put this whole industry out of work because of a regulation that came down that may or may not mean what it was [intended] to mean.

Congressman Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) made a stop at Summit Racing Equipment on April 11 to express his support of House Resolution 4715, the Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports Act of 2016 (RPM Act). Ryan represents the 13th District, which includes Summit Racing’s Tallmadge headquarters.

The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed a rule it says clarifies existing regulations in the Clean Air Act that will prohibit the modification of cars, engines, or emission controls when converting production automobiles into race cars. The bipartisan H.R. 4715 seeks to ensure that converting such vehicles into race cars used exclusively in competition will not be a violation of the Clean Air Act.

“I came here to learn more about this,” Ryan said in a talk with Summit Racing management. “When I go back to Washington tomorrow we can begin to start pushing this…I’m completely committed to this.”

Ryan took a tour of the Summit Racing facility, then gave a short speech to a large crowd of employees about his support for the company and the RPM Act. Ryan is one of 30 co-sponsors of H.R. 4715.

“We’re all for clean air, we’re all for clean water…but sometimes when something happens in Washington and a rule comes down and hits the ground, it has some effects that don’t make a whole lot of sense,” Ryan said. “When you have that happen, it’s important for businesses like [Summit Racing] to contact someone like me…to go back and say, ‘Hey, this isn’t working’.”

According to the Specialty Equipment Marketing Association (SEMA), converting street-driven cars to race cars has been done for decades with no interference from the EPA. If the proposed rule is enacted, SEMA contends it will have catastrophic effects on the $36 billion dollar specialty automotive industry of which Summit Racing is a part.

“It is completely and totally unacceptable to think you’re going to put this whole industry out of work because of a regulation that came down that may or may not mean what it was [intended] to mean,” Ryan said.

The rule may also have serious consequences for the 400,000-plus people in the U.S. that are active racers. Ohio is home to several nationally known race tracks including Summit Racing Equipment Motorsports Park in Norwalk; National Trail Raceway in Hebron; and Eldora Speedway near New Weston, which is owned by NASCAR legend Tony Stewart.

“As I have learned here, it’s all about the grassroots racer,” Ryan explained “If they can’t race, we have lots of people in Northeast Ohio and people in other parts of the country that are going to be without work.”

Ryan expressed his admiration for Summit Racing employees’ work ethic and his determination to passing H.R. 4715.

“You come in to work and bust your rear ends every day because you take pride in what you do,” he said. “Just because this is what the letter of the regulation says now does not mean we are out of it. I’m going turn over every stone I can possibly turn over and talk to everyone in Washington I possibly can to get this thing fixed.”

Ryan closed his speech by asking those in the audience to spread the word on social media—something all enthusiasts and racers can do.

“Social media is very important,” he said. “A lot of you have Facebook, Twitter accounts, Instagram, all that stuff. Part of what we’ve got to do…is to try to create an online buzz…really kind of get some momentum going behind this because I think once most people hear about it, they’ll say that doesn’t make any sense. You know, global warming is not going to be solved by grassroots racers.”

Concerned enthusiasts and racers can write to their own Congressional representatives and tell them to get on the RPM Act bandwagon. The SEMA Action Network has a handy online form for this. People can find their representatives via these links:

[http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/

http://www.senate.gov/senators/contact/

Summit Racing Equipment
SummitRacing.com
1-800-230-3030

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Alan Rebescher
Summit Racing Equipment
+1 (330) 630-0270 Ext: 7406
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