Maine Legislature Considering Better Funding of Trail Grooming

Just wanted to let you know that the legislature’s Inland Fisheries & Wildlife Committee is considering two bills that would increase snowmobile registration fees in Maine starting with the 2014/2015 season. LD 268 and LD 1263 are pretty much the same thing but LD1263 asks for some additional funding for the Snowmobile Program without additional burden put on riders.

Summary of LD1263

This bill makes the following changes related to snowmobile registration and sales tax on snowmobiles and trail-grooming equipment:

  1. It increases the resident snowmobile registration fee from $40 to $60.
  2. It increases the nonresident seasonal snowmobile registration fee from $88 to $108.
  3. It provides that a person who buys an annual registration for that person’s snowmobile before January 1st of each year receives a $10 deduction in the registration fee.
  4. It increases the 3-day nonresident snowmobile registration fee from $43 to $50.
  5. It directs that all revenue raised from registration increases proposed in this bill be deposited in the Snowmobile Trail Fund of the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, Division of Parks and Public Lands, Off-road Recreational Vehicle Office.
  6. It creates a 7-day nonresident snowmobile registration with a fee of $75.
  7. It removes the 5% sales tax on diesel fuel used in off-road trail-grooming equipment.
  8. It removes the sales tax on the purchase of trail-grooming equipment and parts.
  9. It provides that the sales tax on the purchase of snowmobiles be transferred to the Snowmobile Trail Fund.
  10. It creates a snowmobile vanity license plate with a portion of the revenue going into the Snowmobile Trail Fund.
  11. It repeals the language that provided the municipality where the owner of trail-grooming equipment or a snowmobile resides with 26% of the trail-grooming equipment or snowmobile registration fee.

Note that LD268 basically encompasses the first six points above and that LD1263 adds points 7 -11. Note also that ALL NEW MONIES would go to the Snowmobile Program for distribution to clubs via the grant process.

If anyone would care to send a letter of support to the committee members telling them that you are in favor of this fee increase go to:

http://www.jomaryriders.com/2013/news/club-news/an-act-to-improve-snowmobiling-in-the-state-of-maine-ld-268/

All that you need to do is click on the individual email addresses, type your name and address in the pre-printed message (or write a whole new message) and hit send. It’s that easy. Please do it for all twelve committee members as they all need to hear that the clubs need more funds for trail grooming expenses.

The future of snowmobiling in Maine hinges on more funding.

Thanks,

Rick LeVasseur
President, Jo Mary Riders S.C.
Chairman, Maine Snowmobile Trail Fund Advisory Council

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