Utah governor wants crackdown on off-road vehicles | AspenTimes.com

Utah governor wants crackdown on off-road vehicles

The Associated Press
Aspen, CO Colorado

SALT LAKE CITY ” Gov. Jon Huntsman said off-road vehicles are destroying the state’s natural beauty and he plans to crack down on those that stray from trails.

“It’s an abomination, it’s an embarrassment,” Huntsman, a Republican, told The Salt Lake Tribune’s editorial board on Wednesday.

Huntsman said he recently visited the area around Moab with David Bonderman, a venture capitalist and major financial supporter for the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance.

“I wanted to get a sense of what the concern was, and it became a concern to me,” he said.

As a result, he told the Department of Natural Resources to increase enforcement on state land.

“You penalize them. … You give them tickets, you charge them, you fine them, which is what we’re going to be doing through” the department, he said.

The state also will begin airing a public service announcement featuring Chad Reed, a top motocross rider.

“It was a plea to stay on the trail and don’t screw up our beautiful state,” Huntsman said.

Michael Swenson, executive director of the Utah Shared Access Alliance, an off-road group, said off-roaders should obey the law, but that some rules are unreasonable.

“There are many cases where there is not a travel plan in place or there is one that was put together in such a fashion that the recreation community just cannot support it,” he said. “We understand why there is this perception of abuse and I guess really it depends on your point of view.”

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