October 17, 2023

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Senator Cowles Applauds Passage of

Snowmobile Trail Aids Enhancement Bill 


MADISON – Senator Robert Cowles (R-Green Bay) released the following statement after Senate Bill 136, which he authored with Senator Mary Felzkowski and Representatives Calvin Callahan and Rob Swearingen, passed the Senate on a voice vote during Tuesday’s floor period:

“Snowmobiling is not only a Wisconsin pastime, but it’s a large economic generator in rural areas throughout our state. In the 2nd Senate District, many communities enjoy beautiful trails that attract snowmobilers from across the Midwest. However, this recreational activity depends on ample and well-maintained trails, and keeping up with trail maintenance costs has become a challenge for snowmobile clubs in Wisconsin.

Through the changes to the current supplemental snowmobile trail aids program under Senate Bill 136, snowmobile clubs will be able to better maintain our most scenic trails without requiring the allocation of additional funds. I offer my thanks to my Senate colleagues for supporting SB 136, and look forward to Assembly action on this legislation.”

Under current law, the Department of Natural Resources uses revenue generated by snowmobilers to reimburse local governments and snowmobile clubs for eligible trail maintenance expenses. Clubs may receive $300 per mile in the initial payment, and up to an additional three times the per-mile payment for expenses over the initial $300. As some clubs have incurred expenses exceeding this initial payment plus the supplemental reimbursement of up to $900, Senate Bill 136 raises the per-mile reimbursement cap to five times the initial payment, or $1,500.