Road Use Regulations Roundup – November, 2012

Some trends in this latest regulation roundup:

  • The few remaining states without LSV laws have enacted laws allowing the vehicles or are moving in that direction.
  • A majority of the local municipalities noted below are passing ordinances that allow both LSVs and golf cars to be used on public roads.
  • There appears to be less concerns being raised about safety issues of the vehicles in mixed traffic.
  • More municipalities are passing ordinances that allow UTVs and/or ATVs on public roads but in some areas there are some restrictions.
  • Municipalities across a number of states are passing ordinances with the highest activity in Florida, followed by Nebraska, whose state law just went into effect this year.

State Level Regulations

Nebraska – Nebraska’s state law allowing LSVs on streets with a posted speed limit of less than 35 mph went into effect at the beginning of 2012. The law requires drivers to carry liability insurance coverage, hold a valid operator’s license and register.

West Virginia – A State Senate bill was moving through the legislature again to allow LSVs on roads with speed limits of 35 mph or less.

Mississippi – State lawmakers are debating a law to allow LSVs on public roads.

New York – The State Senate passed two bills aimed at making it easier for drivers to register UTVs and for farmers to use ATVs on public roads for agricultural purposes.

Vermont & New Hampshire – The states passed legislation that allows properly registered ATVs in one state to use the authorized state ATV trails in the other state.  The legislation does not apply to UTVs.

Municipality Level Regulations

Tradition, FL – Residents are discussing allowing both LSVs and golf cars on public roads.  Some residents are concerned about the safety of mixing lower speed vehicles with regular traffic and that golf cars do not have the same safety features as LSVs.  Others see the vehicles a way to lessen traffic, reduce gas emissions and allow for older residents to get around independently. The lower costs of insuring golf cars is seen as more manageable for fixed income seniors.

DeFuniak Springs, FL – The city is considering allowing LSVs and golf cars on certain public roads.  One reason is to make the community more retirement friendly.

Holtville, CA – A new sub-committee was formed to work on an ordinance that would approve the use of electric vehicles and golf carts on city streets

Clearwater, FL – The city passed an ordinance to regulate LSVs/golf cars and other alternative transportation vehicles for higher. “The regulations would require business owners to register with the city, carry a minimum of $500,000 insurance, and show a mechanic’s certification that their vehicles are in safe condition. Aside from costs to meet those requirements, business owners also will be looking at paying a $75 application fee and $50 permit fee for each driver of the for hire vehicles.”

Vernon, British Columbia – The town council will consider an ordinance that allows LSVs on public roads.

Rockport, TX – The city passed an ordinance allowing golf cars and LSVs to be used on streets with speed limites of 35 mph or less.

Bristol. TN – The city Council rejected an ordinance that would have restricted LSVs to roads with speed limits of 25 mph or less compared to the current 35 mph or less.

Herington, KS – City officials passed an ordinance that allows golf cars and similar on-road utility vehicles to use public roads during daylight hours.

Enon, OH – Legislation is moving forward that would allow golf cars and UTVs, referred to as under-speed vehicles by the city, to use city streets with speed limites of 35 mph or less.

Crothersville, IN – A City Councilman introduced a bill that would allow ATVs and UTVs to operate on city streets.  The law is modeled on the city’s current ordinance that allows golf cars on city streets.

Waterloo, IA – The city council is considering an ordinance that will restrict the use of UTVs on city streets to essentially work and police related activities.
China Grove, SC – The city expanded their existing LSV ordinance to include UTVs as slow-moving vehicles.
Fremont, NE – The City Council is considering an ordinance that would allow UTVs to be used on city streets. There are some equipment and insurance requirements and the vehicles could only be used during the day.
Weeping Water, NE – The city passed an ordinance to allow UTVs on public roads. Some residents are pushing to include golf cars adn ATVs as well.

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