Pennsylvania considers segregating ATV, snowmobile trail funds

Publish Date: 
Jun 20, 2014

HARRISBURG, Pa. – State legislators are considering a bill to create separate funds for ATV and snowmobile trail money.

House Bill 2047 would direct the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to maintain separate ATV management and snowmobile management accounts to ensure an equitable distribution of those funds.

“DCNR is currently unable to identify how much it spends on ATV trails versus snowmobile trails, but considering the number of trail miles on public lands for snowmobiles outnumbers those for ATVs by a 10-to-1 ratio, it sure looks as if there are some inequities,” bill sponsor Rep. Martin Causer told Bradford Today.

Causer is also concerned that funds are spent unevenly around the state, even though fees come from all over the state. For example, 60 percent of Cameron County is forest land owned by the Commonwealth.

“People in Cameron County pay their ATV registration fees, yet there are absolutely no opportunities for them to ride on public lands in the county,” Causer said. “On more than 131,000 acres of forests, there is not one single trail on which people can legally ride their ATVs. It simply doesn’t make sense.”

Liz Krug, president of the Pennsylvania State Snowmobile Association, said her organization supports transparency in how funds are spent but raised some concern about how the funds could be divided when some trails are used by both ATVs and snowmobiles. “I would like to see the ATV and snowmobile groups work together to promote both sports,” she said. “Together we can develop trails that are cost-efficient and effectively managed.”

Causer is hopeful the bill will be taken up for a committee vote in the near future.

From the Dealernews wires