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Old July 22nd, 2009, 03:35 PM   #1
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Default 2010 Comprehensive OHV Legislation

This may be a but I didn't know if anyone had seen this.

http://www.michigan-sportsman.com/fo...d.php?t=296316

Version: July 21, 2009 (Pre-Draft #1)
2010 OHV Comprehensive Legislation

This legislation impacts numerous sections of Michigan ORV law. It is referred to as the "2010 Comprehensive" to distinguish it from other ORV legislation. The legislation is based on public comment and the contribution of various user groups. It is a work in progress. Changes are anticipated throughout the legislative process. The summary below reflects the status of the legislation as of the date listed above.

The 2010 Comprehensive would increase funding for trail maintenance and law enforcement on public land and county roads. It seeks to better address problems regarding public and private trespass and unsupervised youth operation. It would improve OHV safety education. It would clean-up issues identified with PA 240'08, apply PA 240'08 state-wide and make that law permanent.


Summary of changes:

References to "Off-road vehicle" and "ORV" in Michigan law would be changed to "Off-highway vehicle and "OHV" to reflect federal law.

The cost of an annual trail permit would increase to $30.50. Of that, $14.50 would go to trail maintenance, $14.50 to department operations, enforcement and special initiatives, $1 to OHV safety education, and 50 cents to the license vendor.

An annual registration of OHVs not already plated by the state would be established. The cost of the annual registration would be $6. Of that, $1 would go to the Secretary of State for administration and 50 cents would go to OHV safety education. The remaining money would be dispersed to county sheriffs where county roads are opened to OHVs pursuant to PA 240'08 in a ratio proportional to the number of OHV lane miles open in each county to the state total. The registration would expire on April 1 of each year. Otherwise, the registration process would be closely based on the current snowmobile registration process.

Along with a certificate of registration, the Secretary of State would establish and issue an identifying decal under rules promulgated by that department that would be displayed on the OHV. The registration decal would not be required for OHVs that are already plated through the Secretary of State or have a current plate or current registration decal from another state or a province of Canada.

OHV registrations would be included in the Law Enforcement Information Network (LEIN).

Any county, township, city or village in the state would be able to open its local roads under PA 240. PA 240 would no longer be restricted to northern Michigan.

The Michigan Transportation Commission would be able to permanently, seasonally or temporarily authorize the travel of OHVs on short stretches of state highways that have a speed limit at or below 45 miles per hour.

The location of operation on county roads would be clarified to include maintained shoulders.

The language allowing county road commissions to close up to 30% of county roads for environmental or safety reasons would be clarified to reflect the original intent of PA 240.

Language would be added to authorize local units of government to permit the travel of OHVs on roads maintained with state or local funds that pass through or along federal forest lands.

Penalties would be doubled for trespass on private and public lands, unsupervised youth operation and operating an OHV without a helmet except where helmet use is not currently required.

The definition of an ATV would be amended to reflect the language of HB 5087.

The MDNR would establish an OHV Safety Training Academy to train and license OHV Safety instructors. These instructors would be compensated through rules promulgated by the department through the OHV Safety Training Fund at a rate of not more than $20 per student. Licensed OHV safety instructors would not be allowed to charge an additional fee for classroom instruction but would be allowed to charge a fee for optional hands-on instruction desired by the parent or student.

A free riding day would be established the third Saturday in May where an OHV trail sticker or OHV registration is not required.

Liability limits would be established for trail maintenance organizations equal to that provided to organizations that groom snowmobile trails.

The threshold for an organized group event on state land would be increased to 75 vehicles unless the group is collecting a fee for the event.

Language would be added to define "primitive road" and clarify that primitive roads are closed to OHV traffic.

The PA 240 sunset would be removed.
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 06:04 AM   #2
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For those of you who are rather new to the politics of ORVing in Michigan, let me state for the record that under our current 16.25 ORV sticker fee's, that [for YEARS now ] there has been FAR TOO much abuse and mismanagement of these current 16.25 ORV sticker funds that MUST be addressed BEFORE the legislature should request even a one cent increase in ORV sticker fee's.

Currently, little more than half of YOUR ORV dollars go to trail maintenance..When a Grant Sponsor agree's to take on a trail, this Grant Sponsor is suppose to follow TRAIL SPEC GUIDLINES outlined in their trail maintenance manual. For example, the manual indicates that there is suppose to be the orange triangular confidence markers spaced at EVERY 0.1 mile intervals..So esentially, there should be 10 confidence trail markers for every mile of ORV trail in Michigan.

Tell me something ORV riders?
*When's the last time YOU rode a trail that was PROPERLY marked with confidence markers properly spaced? Yet, the DNR continue to PAY out funding for this service from YOUR ORV dollars. We ORV user's have complained for YEARS now that many of our trails are outside of trail spec guidelines, but yet, the DNR continue to pay grant sponsors $$ from YOUR ORV sticker monies.

*How many times have YOU or a friend rode a part of Michigans Designated ORV trail system that was not properly marked, come to a UNMARKED Y on the trail, only to pick the WRONG trailway of this Y and have a LEO waiting on the OTHER side of this trailway to issue YOU a citation for riding where you are not suppose to be?This is NOT YOUR fault and YOU should not have to pay a citation for this BUT it happens ALL THE TIME..INSTEAD of issuing citations to the innocent ORV riders and CHASING them AWAY from ORV riding in Michigan, WHY are we not FIXING and ADDRESSING this issue by installing the PROPER SIGNAGE? NOW THE LEGISLATURE REQUESTS AN INCREASE IN ORV $$ BEFORE WE/THEY ADDRESS/CORRECT THIS ABUSE OF FUNDING AND MISMANAGEMENT!

TRAIL CLEARANCE STANDARDS
Trails/Routes should be cleared of brush, branches, and obstructions within dimensions according to the following guidlines..Remove tree's,brush, and bushes flush with the ground level or below. Do NOT leave exposed stumps.Remove branches flush with the trunk or main branch so as not to leave projecting pickets.
MOTORCYCLE TRAILS*are to be cleared to 24 inches width at ground level and 40 inches at handlebar level up to 8ft.
ATV TRAILS* are to be cleared to 50 inches width up to 8 feet high.
ORV ROUTES* are to be cleared to 72 inches width up to 8 feet high.

FYI
Very few ORV trails in Michigan are within the above trail maintenance standards. We still have FAR too many trails that have tree branches smacking us up against our helmets and body, far too many trails that are improperly marked and the DNR still pays these folks out of YOUR current 16.25 ORV sticker fee's,YET, LEGISLATION WANTS MORE OF YOUR ORV DOLLARS TO SPEND ON EVEN MORE ABUSE AND MISMANAGEMENT

ORV SAFETY EDUCATION
This is a JOKE at BEST! Michigan mandates that all ORV operators under the age of 16 MUST go thru a COMPREHENSIVE ORV safety education course and be under the direct visual supervision of an adult when operating.

Lets refer to 324.81129 [ 8 ]
THE DEPARTMENT SHALL IMPLEMENT A COMPREHENSIVE ORV INFORMATION, SAFETY EDUCATION, AND TRAINING PROGRAM THAT SHALL INCLUDE THE TRAINING OF OPERATORS AND THE PREPARATION AND DISSEMINATION OF INFORMATION AND SAFETY ADVICE TO THE PUBLIC. THE PROGRAM SHALL PROVIDE FOR THE TRAINING OF YOUTHFUL OPERATORS AND FOR THE ISSUANCE OF ORV SAFETY CERTIFICATES TO THOSE WHO SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETE THE TRAINING PROVIDIED UNDER THE PROGRAM AND MAY INCLUDE SEPERATE INSTRUCTION FOR EACH TYPE OF ORV.

What a freaking JOKE this is..There is NOTHING ''comprehensive'' about the DNRs ORV safety Education course and I beleive it violates section [ 8 ] of 329.81129...Far too many of the instructors hired under the DNR's Administrastion are PATHETIC and most of these instructors dont even own a ATV/Dirt Bike.Most of these guys were hired on the mere fact that they wear a LEO badge of some type and have NOT been properly trained [ if at all? ] to Instruct a ORV safety course. HOWEVER, its a HUGE CASH COW for many of the cops who were hired under the DNRs Adminstration to instruct a ORV safety class. Law enforcement instructors are allowed to SUCK 20 bucks per student from the ORV safety education portion of YOUR current 16.25 ORV sticker fee's..Wayne County Sheriff Dept reported that for Fiscal Year 2008, that they trained a total of 2476 kids and they did this with only doing 37 classes.. Thats 67 kids in EVERY ORV safety class and at 20 bucks per kid, thats an AMAZING 1340.00 per class taught that comes out of YOUR current 16.25 ORV sticker fee's to teach a safety course that I beleive violates the State Statue of 324.81129 [8] ..I PERSONALLY reported this violation to Joel Sheltrowns office on 3-24-09 with a written statement of the violation, and to date, not a single word from him or his staff regarding this issue.If we cant get our own legislatures and Reps to look into a issue as important as our kids own ORV safety and improperly taught classes/instructors, HOW are we as ORV user groups suppose to TRUST them when they come to us for more $$?

AND,
The law that allows a kid to operate a Dirt Bike [ ORV ] at ANY age on Michigans designated trails but only allows a kid 12 or older to operate an ATV ,is FAR TOO outdated [ 1991 law ] and also needs to be updated and amended.

Folks, this is the SAME committee that is writting the Bill to INCREASE your ORV sticker fee's WITHOUT addressing ANY of the issues I have outlined above.

bradymsu might paint a pretty picture to some of you uneducated folks and lead you to beleive that the DNR NEED this increase in ORV sticker dollars for future improvements and maintenance within our ORV sport, WITHOUT telling you the entire story about how the current mismanagment of spending YOUR current ORV $$ has been WASTED/ABUSED and MISMANAGED by the DNR for YEARS now.

I dont think there is an ORVer in Michigan that would say a damn thing about this 30.50 ORV sticker IF our current mismanagment issues were addressed and corrected first.But just like most politicians, the REAL story is only painted on ONE SIDE!
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 01:41 PM   #3
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Unlike Bill, I suppose, I do support most all of the changes as outlined in the posted summary.
Anyway...

Of interest to full-size rigs:

1. Change in definition of an event; increase it to 75 vehicles instead of 20 people. This would help to eliminate the potential tickets for when you go for a ride with your buddies. Currently, if there are more than 20 people, a special permit from the DNR is needed.

2. Add language to define a "primitive road". Current law only defines a forest road and that states that a 2WD car must be able to traverse the road. So, if you need four wheel drive to get through the "road" on State land, it's currently (technically) illegal. This change would help to make it legal.

The rest is really aimed at ATVs/Bikes/UTVs
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 02:30 PM   #4
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How about a more reasonable increase then nearly double. Trail maintenance on most of the trails I ride around West Branch has been good over the past few years.

The Denton-Leota loop south west of Houghton Lake I did get turned off a trail by accident and got a ticket immediately with my daughter and some friends. I was not happy was his lecture at all after riding legally for nearly 30 years and buying stickers etc..
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 03:00 PM   #5
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QUOTE*
Unlike Bill, I suppose, I do support most all of the changes as outlined in the posted summary.
END QUOTE8

Than you must also support the continued years of mismanagement and abuse of your 16.25 ORV sticker fee's?

Its not that I dont think we need more $$ for our sport, its the fact that the DNR has WASTED and MISMANAGED our dollars for YEARS now, and now they have the stones to come to the ORV User's and ask us IF they can have even MORE $$ without assuring us that certain issues of mismanagement and abuse of funding will be taken care of first BEFORE the sticker increase.

Screw me over once, but your not getting the chance to do it twice.

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Old July 23rd, 2009, 03:50 PM   #6
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Bill -

It's not the DNR that's asking for this. User groups have put it together and gotten legislative attention. I'm pretty sure the DNR is adamantly opposed to a number of the items on the list.

As a grant sponsor and trail maintainer, I know what it takes (effort) to do the job right with maintenance. You do a disservice to those that bust their butt on the trails by painting the entire program with such a broad brush.

I've ridden 11 different systems this spring/summer.
The two that were in bad shape were both on USFS land, trails the DNR has no say over. 1 on State land has always been poor, yet was excellent (easily meeting spec) this year, first in several years. The rest were good or great as far as meeting spec.
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 07:29 PM   #7
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QUOTE*
As a grant sponsor and trail maintainer, I know what it takes (effort) to do the job right with maintenance. You do a disservice to those that bust their butt on the trails by painting the entire program with such a broad brush
END QUOTE*

And I have also done trail maintenance in the past, I know what is involved and by NO means, am I refering to those folks who are out there on the trails busting their butts to keep the trails within specs..HOWEVER, I dont believe that you are going to coinvince me that the majoriy of our trail system is within trail spec guidelines. Perhaps I need to get out and ride a little more this year to see ALL the ''in spec'' work you speak of that has been done within the last year? Why dont you tell Signman what a BEAUTIFUL job the Grant Sponsor is doing over at the Leota trailhead since the DNR took that trail away from Great Lakes and gave it to a lower bidder. He'd surly laugh at you!

And if you think for a second I think that the DNR is not PRAYING that this 30.50 sticker fee passes thru legislation, your kidding yourself.Heck, I hear they [ DNR ] are asking for 150k to just RUN the ORV safety program per year and the safety program only takes in 170k a year. You can bet your ass that the DNR have a ''special interest'' in this ORV sticker increase!

This new ORV sticker fee was originated by our ORV Board Chairperson and he knows that without some changes, that I'd oppose the sticker fee, so he quietly left me out of any meetings that even remotely refered to a raise in ORV sticker fee's . What he did'nt know until just recently,was that I also had my own personal meetings with various ORV club Presidents to discuss the same issues. I know a number of club Presidents that dont like this new proposed ORV sticker fee.
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Old July 23rd, 2009, 07:50 PM   #8
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I would definately support an increase if it went to trail maintenance, but this seems like a way to get us to pay for the privledge of driving on the side of the road.
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Old July 24th, 2009, 07:15 AM   #9
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Actually,
on top of the 30.50 ORV sticker, they want you to pay an additional $6 for a registration sticker. Of that $6 sticker fee, $4.50 cents would be dispersed to County Sheriff's where County roads are opened to OHV's..So IF you are one that dont take advantage of the County roadway openings, your going to pay for it anyhow thru this $6sticker.

And I dont like some of the language in the 2010 Comprehenive Legislation either.

*THE COST OF AN ANNUAL TRAIL PERMIT WOULD INCREASE TO 30.50. OF THAT, $14.50 WOULD GO TO TRAIL MAINTENANCE, $14.50 TO DEPARTMENT OPERATIONS, ENFORCEMENT AND SPECIAL INITIATIVES, $1 TO OHV SAFETY EDUCATION, AND 50 CENTS TO THE LICENSED VENDOR.

The MDNR resources has a LONG HISTORY of reading into termonology that best suits their OWN agenda's or special interest. Look at the above wording where it states

''14.50 TO DEPARTMENT OPERATIONS, ENFORCEMENT AND SPECIAL INITIATIVE'S''

The word ''DEPARTMENT OPERATIONS'' and ''SPECIAL INITIATIVES''is NOT defined SPECIFICALLY,and im telling you that the MDNR will FIND a way to TWIST/SPIN the above terminology around to WASTE/MIS-MANAGE OUR ORV dollars even further than they do now.

In 2002, the MDNR spent 40k of ORV user fee's for a sign study. What benefit did the ORV user's get from this study?

Get my point yet?
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Old July 24th, 2009, 10:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TOPWOP View Post
In 2002, the MDNR spent 40k of ORV user fee's for a sign study. What benefit did the ORV user's get from this study?
No idea. I'm sure there is a report - why don't you provide some data that shows it was a $40k waste of money? It is very easy to plant a seed of doubt without backing it up.
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Old July 25th, 2009, 11:55 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScOoTeR View Post
No idea. I'm sure there is a report - why don't you provide some data that shows it was a $40k waste of money? It is very easy to plant a seed of doubt without backing it up.
I'll back Bill up here that the ORV program did dump 40g's into a sign study they have yet to implement. I would scan in the "facts" you are looking for except I have stepped down from my land use duties and passed on all of my file cabinet contents to the next sucker. In other words, someone else in the assoc. has my copy.



I for one do not believe we should have to pay to use the county road shoulders. If any damage occurs to any road shoulder and it can be shown it was due to ORV use the current ORV program provides monies for restoration.

I am on board with the new "event" guidlines, about time!
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Old July 25th, 2009, 07:16 PM   #12
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I don't doubt Bill about a report, or you. I'm just saying it is very easy to leave it open ended, claiming it was a waste - without providing data.
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Old August 2nd, 2009, 05:24 PM   #13
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I dont have the data to go that far back either, however, ANYBODY who has been dealing with the DNR for any length of time knows damn well they are one of the BEST for wasting ORV dollars..

I do however have data handed to me by Lt Andy Turner [ MDNR ] which CLEARLY indicates how much of our ORV dollars went to untrained cops and various other ''fly by night'' ORV safety instructors for FY 2008.

Its a complete shame too.
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