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Does anybody have any idea how the $40 Maine Registration Fee is currently dispursed to Clubs? What percentage they get? Who gets what? What happens when certain Clubs get money and don't really even hardly Groom their trails. I'd like a better idea how the current plan in place operates?
 

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Does anybody have any idea how the $40 Maine Registration Fee is currently dispursed to Clubs? What percentage they get? Who gets what? What happens when certain Clubs get money and don't really even hardly Groom their trails. I'd like a better idea how the current plan in place operates?
I think the reg fee thru the state (thieves) is a good thing to find out more about too.

I do think the real and most important piece is adding a additional mandatory membership....you pick the club...at least $50 if not $60 to them or even split between up to 2 clubs.

Those clubs who earn it and have the most traffic get the most members/increase. Sorry to say it is a expensive sport and not for everyone. Thats reality.

My rides last Sat/Sun were worth that to me alone. Our trails are amazing.
 

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Have a $25 trail pass that is mandatory to ride ITS trails in addition to current registration. This solves the problem of all the guys that say they only ice fish and it's still cheaper to ride than anywhere else.
In addition to that we should have GPS trackers in every groomer that gets State money and clubs should be paid by the mile for what they groom. I think we would have more than enough money by doing it this way that we could raise the amounts paid out for capital equipment grants so clubs wouldn't have to rely as much on municipal and club grants to make their groomer payments. Bottom line...if you ride the trail you pay and if you groom the trail you get paid.
I like that idea but feel the trail pass should be more in the order of at least $50.

So for those of you that belong to the MSA, you should have seen in the latest Maine Snowmobiler that the legislature is looking into a couple of bills related to fee increases and how to improve snowmobiling.

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE, contact your local Representative and voice your opinions on these. The more of them that we can get on our side, the better chance that this could pass.

I don't know the exact wording of these bills yet but they must be better than what we have now....its a start.
 

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Like it or not, I think that a trail pass, or Trail Maintenance Assessment, is the direction that you need to go in. I also believe that the funds generated should be collected and administered by your state snowmobile association instead of state government. Let the state control the registration of vehicles and do whatever they are going to do with the funds they collect. You're never going to get them totally out of it, but at least you would have actual snowmobile people controlling the monies collected. Now come up with a system to fairly distribute the funds to clubs operating groomers. I live in Vermont. It cost $25.00 to register my sled. Then I purchase a TMA, which cost $115.00. Of that, $100.00 goes to VAST, $10.00 to the local club, and $5.00 are county dues. The total price increases by $25.00 if you purchase your TMA after December 15th. Gives you a little incentive to purchase early. Is it expensive, well, I'll leave that for you to decide. Myself, I think it's a bargain for what you get in return. I go riding, trails are groomed and well marked. I also feel good knowing that my dues are being used where they should be. Is it a perfect system, probably not, but what system is? At least the clubs and the independent operators running groomers have a reliable funding source, and the membership gets some nice trails to ride. At the end of the day, isn't that what we are all looking for. Let's face it, snowmobiling is an expensive sport. If we want to have a quality product, we have to expect to pay for it. Not to many things come for free in life. You folks in Maine are very fortunate as you have all the key ingredients for a great snowmobile system. You get ample snowfall, cold weather, and a lot of undeveloped land for trails. I guess now all you need to do is decide how much you want to pay to support such a system.
 

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just my .02 but it seems to me registrations should be the same cost for resident and non- resident. as a non resident i also am a local club member and I bring another 2-4k into the local economy, many of the locals may participate more in helping trail maintenance in the off season but many go riding and then go home to eat and sleep, as well as enjoy more midweek riding.
 

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I am hoping we can come up with some other ideas than the over discussed raising the registration fee or mandatory club joining. These have been beat to death.

1. Years that southern Maine does not have enough snow to groom, there is a way for them to distribute SOME of the money they receive to the clubs that are grooming late into the season
2. A better MSA website with snow cams conditions a forum etc and charge for advertising on that site? Vendors could get their businesses out there like the mats at a restaurant you eat at. The website would have to offer more in order to be able to charge any real money for this.
a. Ways to donate (Paypal, Credit Card) to certain clubs online. Easy to do and you don't have to have cash on you so maybe more likely to donate before you go ride their trails?
3. I am not sure how it works sorry, but what about businesses donating to an area they are in. Maybe offer some sort of commercial membership to a club and offer special signage or advertising for those businesses
4. Do we pay the MSA people? Maybe we could look for volunteers in their place and more money would go to the clubs?

These are just suggestions please don't flame if the are already in place or not practical. I was multi tasking at work.
Just so you know that some and or all of that money is not just for grooming. Its used for bridge material, tools to brush trails, clubhouse things and general maintenance. Sometimes we use up that money before grooming starts. Just a FYI!
 

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I am not trying to be difficult but there have been more than one year that southern Maine hasnt had enough snow to ride on much less groom. I know there are all of these other costs but clubs that groom when there is snow could use a bigger percentage.

Just remember when you say that snowmobiling is an expensive sport and not for everyone, my opinion if you raise the cost too much you will lose more money that you increase it by. More people that ride very little will be willing to take a chance and not register at all. The money from the tickets goes to the general fund I beleive. You cant alienate a large group of Mainers that ride.

Again my opinion but the more money you put in the hands of MSA the more ways they will find to spend it before the clubs get any. More paid positions meeting places news papers blah blah.
 

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i do not see many parking donation boxes, most businesses that allow free parking already contribute to the local clubs, but a club donation box would send money directly to the clubs and generate more than what the businesses are contributing. gonna need to buy gas and food where ever you go, a voluntary fee would not break anyone.
 

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Just so you know that some and or all of that money is not just for grooming. Its used for bridge material, tools to brush trails, clubhouse things and general maintenance. Sometimes we use up that money before grooming starts. Just a FYI!
This.
Our small clubs with no ITS trails get a grand total of $3750 from the state. Some years we spend that much in bridge planking alone.
Other than trail grant $ we scramble for memberships, business memberships, selling raffle tickets, football pools, etc..
And now some want us down south here to give up some $ during low-snow years?

I talked to the lady up at Pittston Farms last weekend. She said they get about 15,000 sleds through there in a typical Winter. If everybody put just ONE DOLLAR in the trail grooming bucket on the counter, a lot of problems go away.
 

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I think the best way is to have all the money from snowmobile registrations go to the MSA. Nothing to the General Fund. All the gas tax money that the snowmobile community pays can be used for the Wardens.
 

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I was thinking if every time you paid for gas, food tab at restaurant or hotel rooms in a snowmobile dominated town that you could be given the option to donate like rite aid, Walgreens and others ask to donate to charity when they ring you up. If you ask while people already have there wallet out it might make it easier to get the funds.
 

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I am all for a reg. increase as long as it goes to the funding of the trail grant. Nothing else. Id gladly pay an extra 50 bucks or more for reg. if it went to the clubs. Compare us to other states. It would still be cheaper than most. Plus there is way more trail in Maine than any other state on east coast. The other obvious thing is to donate to the club and/or clubs that maintain the trails you ride.
 

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"I am hoping we can come up with some other ideas than the over discussed raising the registration fee or mandatory club joining."

I sorry but the single best way to raise substantial additional money for clubs is to require membership to a club. My understanding was that Bob Meyers of the MSA was NOT in favor of this. Until MSA (our voice) supports this it will never happen.

Bob Myers was in favor of this, I attended a legislative session some years ago now (6 or 8) and the MSA decided to vote against the proposal because the Grand Ole State of Maine saw a big payday and was going to collect the money and then possibly (probably not) send some but not all back to the clubs. They needed to keep a portion for the administrative costs. So the MSA voted against to keep the state from stealing from the snowmobiler's and the clubs.

It may be time to re visit this topic under a Republican Gov. with some Republican backing in the senate and house.
 

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How about more fund raising raffles? The jars always work but only if people donate...My husband (Prozac) and I always donate significantly to the jars and not just small change either...Maybe get the local businesses together and do "Snow-Flings" and runs, etc. charge a fee for the event with the proceeds going toward the trails?
 

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Jars are great..and fundraisers too. We put money in them when we see them always.
The problem with that as a main way to better fund clubs is too many entitled mindset folks dont participate. Most will walk right by them. We join 3-5 clubs a year in areas we ride but most join none.

It has to be mandatory to join at least one club (why not 2) payable in a way it goes to MSA to distribute, not thru the state. Either that or a fee of say $60 to a general MSA club fund and you pick 2 clubs you chose to see it go to. This is all aside from the state sticker fee's of course. The volunteers deserve to at very least have needed funds available to do trail work and grooming. Its an expensive process unfortunately.
 

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On a smaller level, during big weekends maybe setup a "toll" type of setup that accepts donations. A lot of fire departments and special Olympics type of operations do that here in maine - Put a sign up, have people standing on each side of the traffic, accept a donation (give a sticker) and move on. Easy way to collect a few bucks.

On top of this set up on the trails that get a ton of traffic with coffee donuts/lunch, every so often. Most snowmobile clubs are nearly invisible and even when coming up on a groomer most have no idea which club it is grooming. Be more visible
 

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It's currently $46 for resident and $100 for non resident. Make sled registrations $75 per sled regardless of residency... if you belong to a club. If you don't join a club, make the registration $100.00 per sled.

Now.. I know the Maine residents will get their undies all wadded up over this suggestion.. but think about it... non residents come to the state, buy food, buy gas... Stay in Hotels, or cabins... out of state riders bring a lot of revenue into the state.
 

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Maine has to start charging resident registration at a higher rate.

$75 for sleds less than 10 years old.
$45 for sleds 10 plus years old.
 
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