Register ATVs to cut down on nuisance behaviour, say SUMA delegates | CBC News

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Register ATVs to cut down on nuisance behaviour, say SUMA delegates | CBC News

Saskatchewan’s mayors and urban councillors have overwhelmingly passed a resolution on the proposed registration of all-terrain vehicles.

The Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association has come out in favour of licencing ATVs as a way to cut down on nuisance behaviour. (Honda Canada)

Saskatchewan’s mayors and urban councillors have overwhelmingly passed a resolution on the proposed registration of all-terrain vehicles.

The motion was put forward by the Town of Battleford and passed Monday at the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association convention in Saskatoon.

Battleford Mayor Ames Leslie said the town has struggled enforcing ATV laws on streets and its river valley trails.

Leslie said it’s not only a nuisance, but a safety hazard, as well — adding there have been reports of close calls involving ATVs.

There’s also the insurance side. If your kid is driving this quad and it rolls, there’s no insurance today.– Battleford Mayor Ames Leslie

“And it seems like it’s going to come to urban centre versus small town mentality,” he said.

“Sometimes small town things are just accepted and they go by the wayside to an extent because that’s what’s always been done. But I also would say, you know, from resort villages and small towns, there’s also the insurance side. If your kid is driving this quad and it rolls, there’s no insurance today.”

He said RCMP and bylaw officers can’t enforce the law if they can’t identify ATVs or their operators.

Battleford Mayor Ames Leslie (left) says ATV users who tear up the trails are a nuisance, but SGI Minister Joe Hargrave says he’s not convinced yet whether or not licencing is the answer. (CBC News)

“It really puts the onus on the person reporting it,” he said. “Because for the RCMP to take action, the person actually has to go down and report their neighbour. And nobody really wants to report their neighbour. You have to fill out paperwork. You have to take a lot of time out of your day to do this or try and capture them on video and follow them home.”

SGI minister Joe Hargrave said the provincial government has had ongoing conversations with the Saskatchewan All Terrain Vehicle Association about putting licence plates on ATVs.

Hargrave said he hasn’t heard this concern from many municipalities, but said the government always has to look at anything related to road safety involving any type of vehicle.

But he acknowledged there are arguments against registering ATVs,

“There’s a lot of companies that use ATVs in their everyday,” he said. “A lot of farms use them in their everyday activities. So, is it necessary to do that? Is it necessary to have them registered? Because it’s just another business tool, basically.”

The vast, vast majority of people are very responsible users of the ATVs.– SGI Minister Joe Hargrave

Hargrave said he understands the argument the town is making about the nuisance, the hazards and the damage to the environment that ATVs can do in urban areas.

“I hear what they’re saying about the nuisance aspect of it,” he said. “But I also know that there’s a strong recreational [use]. And the vast, vast majority of people are very responsible users of the ATVs and [side-by-sides], and they’re very responsible. And it’s a small, small minority that are actually the nuisance.”

Hargrave said the province is willing to discuss the proposal with various stakeholders such as SUMA and the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities.

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