Golf Carts One Step Closer To Being Allowed In Warsaw
WARSAW — Golf carts are one step closer to being allowed in Warsaw after an ordinance had its first reading at last night’s Warsaw Common Council meeting.
Currently, state law prohibits golf carts from operating on a highway, except when a city has adopted an ordinance. The ordinance would authorize golf cart use on Warsaw’s streets and alleys. Several stipulations are included within the ordinance.
Golf cart’s must have a slow-moving vehicle emblem, headlamps, tail lamps, turn signals and brake lights. The operator must have a valid state driver’s license, have the golf cart insured and obtain a valid golf cart permit through the city. Violators will be fined $25 for the first offense, $50 for the second and $100 for any violations after within one year. Failure to be properly insured will result in a $1,000 fine.
According to the ordinance, golf carts will be prohibited from driving on West Winona Avenue, North Detroit Street, South Buffalo Street, Lake City Highway, East Center Street, South Fisher Street, North Parker Street, Argonne Road, Anchorage Road and Husky Trail.
The ordinance was previously brought to the Warsaw Traffic Safety Commission. A motion to provide a recommendation to the council did not pass, with three members opposing. Warsaw Captain Kip Shuter wrote a letter to the council expressing his opinion on the ordinance.
“Plain and simple, city streets are designed for the movement of motor vehicles,” his letter reads. “Do not let the wants of a few override the needs of the many.”
Warsaw Lieutenant Joel Beam was present at the meeting and his thoughts reflected Shuter’s.
“What’s to say that they’re going to follow a city ordinance if they’re already breaking state law?” Beam asked. “In my opinion, golf carts need to stay on golf courses.”
The meeting was then opened for public opinion. One citizen brought up that “the blood will be on [the council’s] hands” if any injuries happen due to the ordinance being approved.
After the public was heard, the council voted on approving the first reading. The first reading was approved 5-1. A second reading will be held at the next council meeting on March 6.
In other news:
- A first reading was held on a social media ordinance. The ordinance allows comments/posts to be blocked on the government’s social media sites if they violate certain rules. The ordinance will have a second reading at the next meeting.
- Freedom Oil LLC was approved for an Economic Development Target Area and a 5-year tax abatement.
- The board heard the first reading for a public way vacation request for Freedom Oil. The first reading was approved and a second reading will be held.