Snowmobile Grant In Aid Account Fund Balances
MnUSA representatives met with the MNDNR on December 10th to review our Snowmobile Grant In Aid account fund balances. There is nearly a $1,700,000.00 shortfall for this year's funding. This was caused by approximately 35,000 snowmobiles not renewing their registrations last year, and $1 million in trail passes not being sold. All is assumed to have been caused by the no snow season we had last year. The fund cannot show a deficit spending so the planning estimates for FYE 6/30/13 must be adjusted at this time by cutting expenses.
The MNDNR's plan is to reduce all expenditures to the fund equally as they must submit a positive budget balance before 12/31/12. For this biennium the snowmobile account has been a 58/42 split with the Grant in Aid portion being the 58%, so the reductions will be assigned the same way. The DNR has determined the GIA 58% will be a $920,000 reduction in funding for this year. Each of the DNR activities will take its applicable percentage cut.
DNR proposed that the projected shortage to GIA be covered by cutting the final 10% benchmark payments to the clubs this season and not placing a sign order.
MnUSA strongly recommended not cutting any funding from the GIA payments. DNR did agree that the reductions will not be enacted until after the February forecast when updated registration reports and the new fund projections are received and reviewed by all. If this year’s registrations are normal, and those expired renewals from last year come in, there should be no shortage to the snowmobile account. But, now is the time to plan for these changes as if they have already been enacted. Clubs will still be paid for 100% for the grooming portion for this season.
The DNR will be contacting the clubs shortly with regard to their final decision on any grant funding shortage.
Pray for snow and get yours and your neighbors sled registrations renewed now. It's going to snow, and you are going riding so why not do it now?