Snowmobilers drop sticker suit following court fee
Last Updated: Wednesday, July 5, 2006 9:43 AM NT
A group fighting mandatory snowmobile trail fees in Newfoundland and Labrador says it can't put up the cash deposit needed to take their complaint to court.
The Supreme Court in Corner Brook has told the Citizens Outdoor Rights Alliance that it must post a $10,000 guarantee to have its case heard.
At issue is a provincial law that since December 2004 has required snowmobile users to pay $80 each year for a sticker that allows them access to groomed trails. The money is put towards trail maintenance and expansion.
In April, the province requested that the group put up $15,000 before the case continues. The money would be used to cover the government's legal costs if it was successful in fighting off the court action.
Bernard Rumbolt, an executive member with the alliance, said the group does not have that kind of money.
However, he said the group will not let the issue rest, even if it is dropping the lawsuit.
Rumbolt said the group will instead wait for someone to be charged for not using a trail sticker, then fight the charge in court.
"We're not going to relax. We're still working," said Rumbolt.
"We're just going to wait until this winter, when the government or somebody is going to charge some poor individual who's out on the trail … without a trail sticker.
"If they decide at that time to fine that individual or whatever, we'll pick up the individual's case and defend that person, whoever it is male or female, in court and use the legal system and see if we can't turn the tables on the province."
Rumbolt said his organization has a lot of support and its members believe they should be able to snowmobile anywhere in the province without paying any fees.
Getting caught on a groomed trail without a sticker could result in a fine of up to $200 for a first offence.
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