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Compromise needed on golf cart situation

October 5, 2012
The Herald-Star

Chances are most of us never thought of a community having a problem with golf cart traffic on its streets. Well, that's precisely what the city of Chester has been facing recently, that is until this week when City Council decided to ban the small vehicles from being driven on municipal roadways.

Recently, the city had received complaints about some golf carts causing difficulties for motorists driving through Chester. City Council believed a decision needed to be made for the safety of the city's residents and others. While we understand council's concern, we think perhaps a compromise could have been arranged instead of an all-out banning.

As pointed out by Chester's city solicitor, golf carts are allowed on city streets under state law as long as the speed limit is no more than 25 miles per hour. Federal law also requires insurance, lights, seat belts and other safety measures be taken, as well as for the carts to be registered.

Obviously, these are not the types of vehicles to be taken onto main roads like Carolina Avenue, but if they were restricted only to side streets with low speed limits and residents are required to meet state and federal laws, perhaps it would help to alleviate some of the concerns.

As it is, officials say none of the golf carts in Chester meet those requirements currently, so it would prevent them from being driven anyway. Perhaps with more time and some communication, a better solution could have been found.

Sometimes trying to work together on an issue can make all the difference.

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