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  1. 3BeeJay3

    3BeeJay3 ODSC Past President

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    News Release – Your letters to our MPP’s about road access for offroad motorcycles have been heard!!

    On Feb 26, Bill 58, which is intended to change current legislation regarding road access for off-road vehicles was brought before the Ontario Legislature for 2nd reading, debated and voted on. Here are some excerpts from the transcript of the debate for the 2nd reading of Bill 58 on Feb 26th. The bill passed 2nd reading with unanimous support. Although the bill primarily refers to ATV’s, we are asking that off-road motorcycles will be added as well.

    Norm Miller MPP Parry Sound/Muskoka;
    I’ve had a lot of letters from the Ontario Federation of Trail Riders, quite a few letters. I’ll just summarize a few of them. They want to be included in this legislation. If this bill passes, I would recommend that they come before committee, if it gets before a committee, and/or participate in the review of off-road vehicle safety in Ontario, which was just announced yesterday by MTO, the Ministry of Transportation. They write, “We are happy to support Bill 58 both in its non-partisan spirit and the sound reasoning behind it.
    “Additionally, the Ontario Federation of Trail Riders encourages further enhancements to this bill that would include licensed and insured off-road motorcycles and other recreational vehicles. Our experience has shown that there is a real need to develop improved highway access legislation that serves all types of off-road recreational vehicles, for practical, economic and safety reasons, as well as much-simplified administration and enforcement.”
    They go on; I don’t have time to read it. That was from Brian Knechtel, president of the Ontario Federation of Trail Riders”.


    Steve Clark MPP Leeds-Grenville:
    “The second thing I’ve heard—and the member for Parry Sound–Muskoka mentioned it, and it was mentioned by a number of off-road motorcycle enthusiasts in my riding, like Dave Chartrand of North Augusta, Trevor and Stan Strickland, and Judy Kingston, who are all from Lombardy. It’s the same thing. I know that the member behind me, Mr. Miller, mentioned this issue. The Ontario Federation of Trail Riders had mentioned this, and he mentioned them in his remarks. I agree that we need to get this and the other concerns of the off-road vehicle owners in front of committee.”

    For all those who helped and participated, many thanks for all your efforts to raise this important issue with our legislature. We’ll keep you updated on any new developments.

    Thanks,

    Brian Knechtel
    Special Projects Consultant
    Ontario Federation of Trail Riders
  2. Grey Jay

    Grey Jay Limited User

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    Any timeline as to when there will be a final answer for this?
  3. 3BeeJay3

    3BeeJay3 ODSC Past President

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    Unfortunately no.

    However, we as part of the OPSWG have had several calls & meetings with Policy staff at the MTO recently. They have been asking lots of good questions. Also, there were about 1700 responses to the recent MTO road access survey, of which a significant portion were from OFTR members. This is good.
    MTO staff are finalizing briefing docs for the Minister and others. There is currently a lot of political will to see something happen, but no guarantees.
    IMO, Best case for an announcement, probably in the fall...... Worst case? Who knows....
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2015
  4. ecarnell

    ecarnell ODSC-OFTR Member

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    Great news! Good job!
  5. Grey Jay

    Grey Jay Limited User

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  6. 3BeeJay3

    3BeeJay3 ODSC Past President

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    It's a bit of a complicated issue due to the different legislation bikes have vs ATVs. This whole issue is going to be dealt with in phases, with the second phase likely starting later this summer. Future phases will also deal with safety, training etc. We have had further discussions with the MTO about this and they have assured us they are committed to working with us to find a solution for bikes. The current staff at the MTO have an entirely different attitude and approach towards these issues than what we saw 5-6 years ago.(in a good way)
    One possibility is that some legislative amendments get done as part of an annual process at the end of the year.....
    We'll have to have patience and bear with the process.
    It's also important to note that the MTO did note a lot of responses from OFTR members for the safety survey they held in March/April. The survey received over 1700 responses from the public and was considered an exceptionally good response level. About 98% of the responses were in favor of increased road access for off-road vehicles.
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2015
  7. fedge

    fedge Limited User

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    Nothing complicated about it , what the ATV/UTV got was the support of all the off road community to help push through their Bill 58 or whatever it was, without even a mention. Dog and Pony Show all to benefit the ATVers.
  8. Grey Jay

    Grey Jay Limited User

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    Updates???
  9. 3BeeJay3

    3BeeJay3 ODSC Past President

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    Nothing concrete.
    However, there is an agreement with the MTO to create a working group to work on this issue. The expectation is to have the working group in place before the end of the year.
  10. Grey Jay

    Grey Jay Limited User

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    Sign me up if the working group needs a member from Northern Ontario!