Ah, now Wisconsin is wider open to drunken snowmobiling, thanks to a deliberate pull back by the DNR under pro-business Cathy Stepp - - Scott Walker's new DNR secretary.
From a Fox6 News report:
For many snowblowers, sledding from bar to bar is an accepted part of the culture. A 2009 FOX6 investigation found riders getting loaded with no fear of getting stopped.
"DNR Director Cathy Stepp says, "There's a feeling or perception in the area of over enforcement."
To supplement local law enforcement efforts, the DNR spends $125,000 a year in overtime to fund a special Snowmobile Accident Reduction Team(SART)...
...Stepp says she's been hearing from constituents up north that they don't like the extra patrols. "And the perception was, there's a lot of tax dollars going to pay for overtime, and for time in the woods. I mean that's the perception."
Stepp recently ordered the SART team to stop enforcing snowmobiling laws in the northwoods. She claims there is no controversy in this move. She says it's a money saving move.
"I'm charged with being frugal with the money we're given."
Instead of disbanding SART, she reassigned them to patrol trails south of highway 29. It's a line that extends from Green Bay to Shawano to Eau Claire. Stepp says there's more deaths south of highway 29.
Stepps statement is barely true. There have been six riders killed north of highway 29 compared to eight deaths in the south.
Over the past nine seasons 140 snowmobilers have died in the northern third of the state, compared to just 72 everywhere else. That's a margin of 2-1.
Stepp admits she was influenced by a stream of complaints from northwoods business owners, snowmobile club members, and at least one police chief in Minocqua.