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Golf carts on FD streets?

Idea is topic for debate

July 23, 2013
By BILL SHEA (bshea@messengernews.net) , Messenger News

Jim Koll doesn't own a golf cart, but he believes people who do should be allowed to use them to get around Fort Dodge.

The Fort Dodge man submitted a proposed law allowing golf carts on streets to the City Council. His proposal has sparked discussion on the merits of golf cart travel and the role of the city's staff in the debate.

''I perceived unanimous support from the City Council and the mayor,'' Koll said during Monday's council meeting. ''Is the staff stopping the council from acting?''

City Manager David Fierke said he wants to have a broader discussion about the need for an ordinance allowing golf carts on city streets.

''We're responding to an idea, not an identified demand or a problem with an existing ordinance,'' he said.

On Monday, council members generally agreed to have a workshop discussion on the proposal in the future. A date for that discussion wasn't set.

Golf carts weren't on the council's agenda Monday. Koll raised the issue during the meeting's public comment time.

He said he drafted a proposed law and submitted it to Fierke and Police Chief Tim Carmody. He said the proposal would ''give the citizens the opportunity to enjoy electric golf cart travel.'' He added that it wouldn't cost the city any money.

He said when he didn't hear anything about the proposal, he submitted it to Councilman Mark Taylor.

Taylor said he wanted to schedule a workshop on it, but his request was denied.

Fierke said he didn't believe the proposal was ready for discussion by the full council. He said he feels there are significant questions to be answered before moving forward on the proposal.

''How do we take that idea and create a law that is enforceable?'' he asked. ''What is the demand for it and what do we do to accommodate that demand?''

Mayor Matt Bemrich said he believes that if golf carts are permitted on city streets owners of all-terrain vehicles will quickly demand that their machines be allowed as well.

 
 

 

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