North Bay City Council votes to increase access for snowmobiles
NORTH BAY -- It might be summertime, but North Bay City Council is already looking ahead to the snowmobile season.
City council voted unanimously to update the motorized snow vehicle bylaw by the time the next season starts.
By the time winter rolls around, you’ll see a lot more snowmobiles accessing city amenities like hotels, restaurants, and gas stations in an attempt to boost tourism.
"It’s certainly a big winter tourism driver for us," City Councillor Dave Mendicino said. "From an economic standpoint, these individuals drop a lot of money into our area and region."
Both the North Bay and South Shore Restoule snowmobile clubs asked for revisions almost two years ago.
"We are really happy. I’m pleased with what we’ve accomplished with the team and with the city helping us do this," said South Shore Restoule Snowmobile Club President Diane Tregunna.
Council also approved the set fines for anyone who does not follow the bylaw. The fines for the majority of offences will be raised from the $90 fee set out in 1995 to $200.
"We wanted to try to find that balance for safety. That’s certainly top of mind for city staff and the snowmobile clubs quite frankly," Mendicino said. "We want everyone to be safe."
The snowmobile clubs are asking for $15,000 in funding to build, maintain, and groom the access trails to the businesses and erect signage plus $40,000 in funding to purchase new equipment.
"We’re trying to get funding from other organizations and other grants before asking the city," Tregunna said.
Mendicino is hopeful the snowmobile clubs might receive their requested funding through Tourism North Bay.