Golf carts get green light in Windsor

Published 9:09 am Saturday, June 12, 2010

WINDSOR – The town of Windsor took steps to regulate the use of golf carts on public roads here Thursday morning.

During the regular meeting of the Windsor Board of Commissioners, the board voted unanimously to adopt a new ordinance regulating the operation of golf carts pending review by Town Attorney Braxton Gillam.

The new rules allow the operation of golf carts on public streets, roads and highways in Windsor and on property owned or leased by the town as long as it is properly registered.

Those golf carts not subject to the new provision includes those used at a golf course, those in limited access communities, parades and any that may be used by the Windsor Police Department.

Windsor Town Administrator Allen Castelloe told the board he had prepared the ordinance based on their request and had sent it to the town attorney, but Gilliam had not had an opportunity to review it.

Windsor Commissioner Bob Brown said he would like to see the ordinance move forward pending the attorney’s okay that everything was legal because he didn’t want to wait another month.

“I have at least one person who is very interested in this getting done so they can move forward and as long as there is no legal problem, I think we should go ahead,” Brown said.

Brown made a motion to pass the ordinance barring any objections by the attorney and Commissioner Collins Cooper offered a second. It passed by a unanimous vote.

Provisions in the ordinance will require a driver’s license and registration for those operating the golf carts.

“No person who is less than 16 years of age or who does not have a valid driver’s license issued or granted by the laws of North Carolina or some other state may operate a golf car on any public street, road or highway within the Town or on any property owned or leased by the town,” the ordinance reads.

The ordinance also declares that a learner’s permit or suspended license will not satisfy requirements to drive a golf cart.

The golf cart will have to be registered with the Windsor Police Department and a registration fee of $25 paid before it can be used. There will also be an inspection required or photos submitted to allow the police department designee to approve the vehicle.

Requirements for the golf cart to pass inspection include a rear view mirror with red reflectors, reflective “slow moving” sign or flag, functioning brakes, standard safety features, and mechanical systems and safety equipment.

Golf carts may be driven from sunrise until sunset except ones that are equipped with at least one operating headlight of 55-watts and two operating tail lights. They may not be used in fog, smog, smoke or other conditions that reduce visibility.

There is a list of streets, however, on which golf carts may not be driven except for the sole purpose of crossing those streets. Those include King Street, Granville Street, Water Street, Cooper Hill Road, U.S. 17, U.S. 13, Sterlingworth, US.13/17 Bypass, N.C. 308 and any other street where the posted speed limit is more than 35 miles per hour.