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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ind. Law - "Mitchell could reauthorize golf carts on town streets under new law"

Krystal Shetler of the Bedford Times-Mail ($$) reports today:

MITCHELL — Golf carts may be a go in Mitchell soon, thanks to the Indiana General Assembly.

A new bill prohibits an individual from operating a golf cart on a highway. However, it allows cities and towns in the Hoosier state to adopt ordinances authorizing the use of golf carts on city streets.

The news elates people in Mitchell, who pushed for the use of golf carts on city streets. In June 2008, Mitchell Mayor Dan Terrell put a notice in the newspaper encouraging the use of golf carts. However, after Harold Sanders was ticketed by the Lawrence County Police Department for using his golf cart on city streets, the mayor was forced to rescind his earlier statement because he found out golf carts were, indeed, illegal.

Terrell, who owns a golf cart, said he is working with City Attorney Bill Mullis to draw up an ordinance allowing the use of golf carts in Mitchell.

He will present the ordinance to the city council at its June 1 meeting.

“We are looking at what other cities have for ordinances in reference to golf carts, and we are going to tweak it to fit Mitchell,” Terrell said.

“I hope the council will see the benefit this could bring to our older citizens, and pass it as they see fit.”

Harold and Rhondee Sanders put their golf cart up for sale once they found out they couldn’t be ridden on city streets. They’re glad now that it didn’t sell, and plan to attend the council meeting to urge elected officials to pass the ordinance.

The state bill specifically says that cities or towns may “require that a golf cart display a slow-moving vehicle sign or a red or amber flashing lamp.” It also says those operating golf carts must hold a valid driver’s license, retain financial responsibility and, if damaged, those parts (glass, plastic or metal) must be removed from the street.

“I think that golf carts are much safer than mo-peds, four-wheelers or motorized wheelchairs, yet we see those all over town,” Rhondee said. “We hope the council will pass this, as we look forward to riding ours this summer.”

The bill is HEA 1483.

Regular readers will recall that the ILB has had a long list of entries re authorizing the use of golf carts on city on town streets in Indiana.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on May 19, 2009 09:31 AM
Posted to Indiana Law