2006 Washington ORV Rally

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Be a part of the massive ORV Rally in Olympia, on the Capitol Building steps, on Friday, February 3, from noon to 2 pm!!!  Uninformed legislators, led astray by those who would erase all ORV recreation from the face of the earth, and bolstered by unelected bureaucrats with their own agendas, continue to back all of us who participate in these wonderful, family-based forms of recreation, into a corner.

Last year, at the first major ORV rally in the Capitol in decades, you showed up in force, with your rigs hauling your toys. We gridlocked Olympia and put a huge crowd on the Capitol Building steps. We could not be ignored. When we yelled, the thunder rolled through our Legislator’s halls and offices. You made a difference - bills that would have crippled our recreation through funding thefts and private property restrictions were stopped in their tracks, and our efforts to educate legislators on the issues and facts won some important converts and supporters. Most of all, our pressure was behind finding the Grays Harbor County solution to reopening Thurston ORV Park (Straddleline). Further, we got a bill passed which allowed rural communities to designate ORV routes, with over 600 miles designated in Colville National Forest so far.

But ours is not a normal political battle, where two sides negotiate and try to end up with both winning, or at least neither losing. The enemies of ORV recreation clearly will not stop until they reach their goal – our sport no more.  No surprise that they are trying to get their hands around our throat again this year, and thus we must never let up. We’re not just fighting for our favored form of family recreation, this is indeed a fight for our freedom to pursue happiness as we wish!

So just try to wipe us out!  We’re fighting back like the proverbial cornered animal. We’re taking it to the next level in every arena, including this second annual ORV Rally!  And this one is going to be even more effective.

For starters, instead of filling Olympia with our rigs and toys to demonstrate our economic impact, we are going to fill it with ORV people. Carpooling will accomplish this – and it is a must as parking is being limited. Cram every ORV buddy you can into your car!  We can fill the steps, the lawn, the courtyard, and beyond. We can easily be the biggest crowd our legislators have ever seen, and when we roar on February 3, the whole town will hear us. Parking will be at Deschutes Parkway by the lake, protected by the WSP, and shuttles will be provided to get us over to the Capitol Building (it’s only a half mile).

The second big push for this rally is to book each legislator’s calendar solid all day before and after the noon to 2 pm slot, with voting constituents ready to talk about our issues. This is just as important as making a big splash on the Capitol steps!  It’s easy, use www.apps.leg.wa.gov/districtfinder to quickly identify your legislators from your district, and access their private official email address. Use that to make an appointment with them for Rally Day!

We have plenty of issues, and talking point papers will be widely available before and during the rally, to use in your meetings with legislators, should a member of the press ask you questions, or just to be fully informed yourself:

  • North Fork and Pilchuck/P2000 Road ORV closures – bureaucratic closures with no real attempt to mitigate the underlying issues, forcing more ORV use into ever smaller available opportunities.
  • DNR closure of Multiple Use trails in the Tahuya ORV area.
  • Shelton County ORV closures.
  • Noise bills, attempts to eliminate ORVs with insane noise level requirements that ignore all other noise sources, many of them truly loud.
  • ORV liability issues – we’re pushing a bill to limit liability on private land owners who provide ORV opportunities – this is critical!
  • Insisting that public land not be managed by "Closed Unless Posted Open" – No "King’s Forest!"
  • ORV tabs and limiting DOL skimming of ORV tab funds – a bill by us to reduce what they take for administration to a reasonable amount. When we allowed our tabs to be increased from $5 to 18 to offset the theft of our gas tax refund, the DOL continued to take 18% off the top! It shouldn’t cost them any more to process per tab regardless of how much the fee is.

We’ll use the same staging points as last year, wear your gear, bring the whole family, kids too!

Rally Staging Points:

  • Cycle Barn - Smokey Point
  • RMC - Renton
  • Tacoma Mall - Tacoma
  • South Sound Honda- Olympia
  • Mason County - Shelton Denny's

If you want to make your own signs, the official slogans are:

  • Open Areas = Quiet Neighborhoods
  • OHV Use Is Not A Crime
  • OHV Use Builds Strong Families
  • DNR Land Is Not "The King's Forest"

It costs to make the signs and other rally materials. If you would like to make a donation, contact Rally Treasurer Brett Wise at (425) 226-4320 x.207 or BWise@rentonmotorcycles.com. For more information on the Rally, to volunteer, etc., contact Ed Bushnell at 425-931-3332 or Angie Marek at 253-537-3172.

If you love ORV recreation, you’ve got to find a way to be there!  We need to win the current battles, for sure, but one day we’re going to win this war!  We’ll see you on the Capitol Building steps February 3rd!

Winter 2006/Tory Briggs

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