UTV provision in Senate budget 'a major step forward,' St. Lawrence County Trail coordinator says
Monday, March 17, 2014 - 11:38 am

St. Lawrence County’s Trail Coordinator is praising a Senate budget proposal that would allow registration of universal task vehicles.

St Lawrence County Trails Advisory Board and Trail Coordinator Deb Christy said the Senate majority’s support puts county one-step closer to unleashing the economic windfall that would come with updating New York’s antiquated ATV definitions.

The proposal would allow the Department of Motor Vehicles to register larger recreational vehicles, which supporters say would bring money into the county, by expanding outdoor recreation options.

“This is the first time the proposal to allow for the registration of UTVs has been included in the Senate’s budget proposal, and it marks a major step forward for the legislation,” Sen. Pattie Ritchie said in a news release.

Assembly representatives Addie Russell and Ken Blankenbush and Sen. Joe Griffo are also in favor of the bill to increase the weight limits.

“We want to thank Senators Pattie Ritchie and Joe Griffo and their colleagues for their tireless work on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of riders and their family members who have been unable to legally register the newest, safest, and greenest machines on the market,” Christy said in a released statement. “As the only state in the nation that doesn’t allow riders to register vehicles that weigh over 1,000 pounds, New York is missing out on millions of dollars in sales tax, registration fees, gas, food, and lodging, that the Upstate economy desperately needs.”

Christy said allowing people to register UTV is a “major step” toward building on Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s commitment to tourism, encourage more people to participate in outdoor sports and highlighting New York as a tourist destination.

“The big winners in the state Senate’s one-house budget are not only the families who use ATV’s/UTV’S, but the small business owners and their employees who rely on customers to buy gas, food, lodging and the dealers who sell these fantastic vehicles,” she said in a release.

Christy also praised Assembly sponsor Addie Russell. She said Russell’s relentless work on this issue continues to be one of the county’s biggest assets in the campaign to promote this vital statewide industry.