SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY OFF-HIGHWAY VEHICLE (OHV) ORDINANCE SUCCESSFUL
BAKERSFIELD, CA (December 29, 2006) – On April 11, 2006 The San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors unanimously passed an OHV ordinance that is fair to both off-roaders in the county and residents who have valid complaints. Everyone involved in the process of drafting the new ordinance agreed it worked well during the recent Thanksgiving Holiday. Mike Romage, Supervising Code Enforcement officer in the south desert for San Bernardino County, stated “Judging from the success we’ve seen during the first six months of enforcement, I am confident the ordinance will continue to reduce OHV-related problems.” Two staging permits were issued as a result of the new ordinance. The permit holders were monitored closely by both code enforcement and San Bernardino County Sheriffs. All conditions stated in those permits were met.
Since its July 2006 implementation law enforcement and code enforcement officers made an effort to educate the riding public about the new ordinance. Over 5000 flyers were distributed informing people of the new requirements. Citations were only issued after the 45 day grace period. Meg Grossglass, Off-Road Business Association (ORBA) representative involved in crafting the ordinance, stated, “I am pleased that this ordinance has reduced the amount of illegal activity while still allowing families to enjoy riding together.”
The process used to draft this particular ordinance was unique. The county agreed to the formation of a group of stakeholders composed of environmentalists, OHV organizations and community groups from around the county. The goal of this group was to find a compromise on this sometimes very contentious issue and then go before the Supervisors united in their support for the agreement reached. After two very long meetings the stakeholders agreed on the language used in this ordinance. “We hope that other counties around the country look to the process used by San Bernardino when attempting to solve OHV-related problems,” commented Fred Wiley, Executive Director of ORBA.