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Old March 18th, 2008, 09:13 PM   #15
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APRIL 16, 2008 IS YOUR DAY


April 16, 2008, 1:00 pm is date and time set by the Chair of the Senate Committee of Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs, Senator Patricia Birkholz. The Committee will meet and hear testimony from the people on House Bill 4323.

In a brief explanation, HB 4323 once passed into law will permit an ORV to operate to the “far right” on 70% of northern Michigan roadways, upon adoption of an ordinance adopted by local jurisdiction.

This will mean in most counties, you will be able to use your ORV to obtain gas, food and lodging, ride from your campground, motel, cabin or home on 70% or more of the county roadways in northern Michigan. You will be able to ride to the trailhead, run an errand or take a simple evening ride on back roads.

HB 4323 applies to Bay, Gladwin, Clare, Osceola, Lake, Mason and those counties north, for the remainder of the state.

Maximum speed will be 25 mph, helmet, eye protection required and all youths must be 12, have a DNR ORV Safety Certificate and be accompanied by an adult. All Public Act 300 traffic laws must be obeyed.

We are asking for your support and to be in Lansing on April 16th if at all possible. Here is the plan;

We need as many as possible to show up with an ORV in the back of a pickup and park in the Capitol area.

We need you to come inside the Farnum Building, (Senate Office Building) and fill out a card that you were there, please, do not mark the box you wish to speak, there is a reason.

We then need you to go outside on the sidewalk and join others with a sign in hand with your proper statement as to why you want 4323 passed. It is your day, be polite, from your heart and in the interest of the sport, make your statement. Poster board and Sharpies are fine, but make them neat; this is not a high school car wash. Be prepared for the press and remember, any comments you make, reflects on 350,000 plus other users and the advancement of our sport.





A good statement on your sign would be, ” list your county, Supports HB 4323”

Before you leave, be sure and visit your Senators office, a simple elevator ride away, or a walk across the corner in the basement of the Capitol. Express to your Senator or one of their staff, your support of HB 4323. This may be the most significant thing you do all day. We will have people there to give you directions to the Senate offices.

Why not speak? There are several people who are very well versed in what needs to be said to discredit our oppositions expected statements in the eyes of the Committee. We want our story to be told. The hearing will last about 1 ½ to 2 hours, tops. If we miss the opportunity of having someone speak that is really well prepared and their statements are vital, that could be very detrimental to our cause.

In the end, the Chair determines who speaks and who don’t.

Our objective remains, to get HB 4323 passed “as presented” to manage the sport of ORV activity in the interest of safety, environmental protection, increased recreational opportunity and economic benefit.

At this point, looks as if this day will be a “happening” with several groups considering hiring a bus, some have, carpooling or participating in the pickup brigade. With good effort, we will see the day when we can leave the cabin in Gladwin and ride via the back roads, all the way to the bridge or ride across the UP from DeTour to Ontanogan. An awesome family vacation!

HB 4323 will make it possible for us to host several types of events such a rally’s, jamborees and other organized events that we read about in other states.

A win with HB 4323 will pave the way for us to gain further legislation that will enhance our sport even more. The future of our sport depends a lot on your participation the 16th of April! Watch the various ORV websites for updates.

Submitted by Dick Ranney

AMA D-14 Off-Road Legislative Director
Legislative Liaison, Cycle Conservation Club of Michigan
Coordinator, Michigan Motorized Recreation Council
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