California OHMVR Director Fired
Story reprinted with permission of Sand Sports Magazine We recently learned that Daphne Green, the Deputy Director of the California Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation (OHMVR) division of State Parks, will be released from her duties as Deputy Director effective the first day of 2012. The replacement to be appointed by Governor Jerry Brown has not yet been announced, but the decision could have long lasting negative effects on the state’s program, including unraveling the 2008 SB 742 revision that made the OHMVR commission more advisory in nature. The State’s OHMVR trust has been in peril since the State siphoned 10 million dollars in gas tax from its budget before it could reach the trust earlier this year, and plans for a continued removal of those funds will continue indefinitely according to Fred Wiley of the Off Road Business Association (ORBA). In addition the State has a long history of borrowing from OHMVR trust to the tune of tens of millions every year, taking the money from much needed acquisitions and improvements savings. The 85 million dollar per year budget to run the California OHMVR program is comprised primarily of gas tax with only about 20% coming from the sale of Green Stickers. “There is an increasingly large concern for the long term solvency of the California OHMVR fund, the management, and the grant process that funds education, law enforcement, and restoration projects in the state of California” said ORBA President Fred Wiley. “The loss of hard working Miss Greene will be a tough blow for the OHV community” Wiley continued.
ORBA has been exploring options for protection of the OHMVR trust since July 2011 with its strategic partners AMA District36, AMA District37, the American Sand Association, and the California Association of 4 Wheel Drive Clubs through the use of its registered state lobbyist Aaron Reed and Associates, according to Wiley who closed with a grim statement regarding the future of motorized recreation in the state of California. “We are seeing unbelievable potential for the loss of OHV opportunities in the state from many fronts, and not nearly enough resources to properly control the offensive.” To find out more information or how you can help save the OHMVR program, please contact ORBA at www.orba.biz, or your local California OHV access advocacy group.