Board to discuss use of golf carts on city streets

Published 7:26 pm Friday, October 19, 2018

During its meeting Tuesday, Washington’s Planning Board is scheduled to discuss proposed ordinances related to golf carts.

Part of the draft ordinance related to golf carts reads: “In order to promote the safety of drivers, passengers and the general public in the city, the operation of golf carts must comply with applicable State of North Carolina laws and regulations pertaining to the operation of traditional motor vehicles, and must also comply with the specific provisions included in this article.” The draft states that the city neither advocates nor endorses a golf cart as a safe means of travel on public streets, roads and highways. The city is not liable in any way for accidents, injuries or deaths involving or resulting from the operation of a golf cart, the draft states.

The proposed ordinance allows the operation of golf carts on public streets, roads and highways with a posted speed limit of 35 mph or less within the city and on property owned or leased by the city in compliance with provisions of the ordinance. Operating a golf cart not properly registered and permitted by the city would be illegal, according to the draft.

Operation of golf carts in the following circumstances would not be subject to the proposed ordinance:

  • operation of golf carts on private property with consent of the property owner;
  • operation of golf carts within private, gated or limited-access communities, unless streets in the community are dedicated for public use and maintained by the city;
  • use of a golf cart in connection with a parade, festival or other special events, provided the consent of the sponsor is obtained, the police department is notified and provided the golf cart is used only during such an event.

The draft includes other regulations pertaining to golf carts, including banning them from U.S. Highway 17 Business (Bridge Street and Carolina Avenue), 15th Street and Fifth Street/John Small Avenue. A golf cart’s speed may not exceed 20 mph. Golf carts must abide by all parking regulations that apply to traditional motor vehicles.

Violators of the ordinance, if it is approved and adopted by the City Council, are subject to penalties prescribed in state law for violations.

See Tuesday’s edition of the Washington Daily News for information about the proposed ordinance related to abandoned boats. The Planning Board meets at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Council Chambers at City Hall, 102 E. Main St.

About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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