Proposed OHV Ban In York County Pa.

Once again we are involved in a fight to preserve our right to recreate on our own property in Pennsylvania. York County seems to be the epicenter of this controversy with eight anti-OHV ordinances going to vote to date. So far we have successfully defeated three of these anti-OHV ordinances, but the list continues.
The next battleground is Fairview Township, York County. Often townships already have ordinances in place to protect residents against trespassing, noise, and dust generated by neighbors; Fairview Township is no exception. The present Township Ordinance Chapter 10, Part 3, 2008ords/ pdffiles/2330-010.pdf , addresses just these issues. Yet, because of one angry neighbor these rules are not enough, and the township is willing to add a new chapter in exchange for his silence. The wise and fair alternative would be to adopt a simple dust ordinance to cover residents from undesirable nuisances. Then a resident could file a nuisance complaint without singling out a specific group such as the OHV enthusiasts.

On December 1st @ 7:00 PM. Fairview Township supervisors will be meeting to discuss and vote on Ordinance 2008-11, which will unfairly impact residents who ride on their own property and turn recreating into a crime. We need everyone’s help. Your letters of support and attendance are desperately needed to defeat Ordinance 2008-11. Please mark the 1st on your calendars and come support the residents of Fairview Township
Please review the attached copy of this proposed ordinance. The highlights of the new ordinance will require OEM exhaust, a 300 foot property line setback, no riding 50 feet from a stream, dust restrictions, a four rider limit, and alternating operating hours. The Fairview Township Ordinance 2008-11 has some particularly weak and hard to enforce provisions.

• OEM exhaust? This requirement demonstrates a lack of understanding of what they’re trying to regulate. Anyone who rides knows that being factory installed equipment has nothing to do with how loud something is. A factory exhaust can be louder than many after market exhausts and can be easily modified to be louder. A measured decibel level is what’s needed, and already exists as a township ordinance.

• No riding 50 feet from a stream? What about a bridge? This provision coupled with the 300 ft setback effectively makes anyone with less than 4 acres a criminal if they ride on their own property.

• The 300 foot setback is problematic as well. Who’s measuring the set back? Is everyone involved willing to get their property lines marked? Are the police required to witness the riding and then measure the distance? If you have permission to ride on your neighbor’s property, do you have to carry the written permission slip? What about the person whose property borders several other properties, do you need written permission from all landowners or just the owners you ride within 300 feet of?

• Riding time limitations are unbalanced. Why one on and two off? Why not one on and one off? The proposal seems arbitrary and discriminatory to the riders without accomplishing anything

Again, please review the attached copy of this proposed ordinance. Formulate your own opinion, gather your thoughts, write a letter opposing Ordinance 2008-11, and send to Fairview Township Supervisors, 599 Lewisberry Road, New Cumberland, PA 17070 or call 717-901-5215. If writing isn’t your strong point, I will be posting a form letter on November 19th at , which can be printed and signed.

Remember, clear your calendar for December 1, 2008 at 7:00 PM and attend this meeting in force. We have had great success with Anti-OHV Ordinances when we pack the house. I realize many of you may be off deer hunting when we need you the most, so please send your family members as your representative. This is a family sport, and many outsiders do not realize the scope of OHV recreation. The meeting location is Fairview Township Building, 599 Lewisberry Road, New Cumberland, PA 17070.
We must stand as one unified voice, and stop this snowball effect from converting our recreational fun into a crime.

Denny Mann
PaOHV Executive Director