City says no golf carts, for now

Published 8:49 pm Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Bainbridge leaders decided the city isn’t ready to become golf cart friendly, at least not yet.

At their Tuesday meeting, the Bainbridge City Council unanimously voted to table consideration of an ordinance that would have allowed the usage of motorized carts on city streets. They’re not currently allowed on city streets because Georgia law states only tagged and registered vehicles can be operated on roadways.

Ironically, Councilwoman Roslyn Palmer—who had requested City Manager Chris Hobby prepare the ordinance last month—was also the first to suggest not approving it. Palmer said her proposal of the ordinance, when gas prices were around $3 per gallon of regular unleaded, was an attempt to provide alternative local transportation.

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After examining state laws concerning motorized cart usage, Palmer said she believed putting up signs on every street on which carts would be permitted and designating which intersections along state routes could be crossed would be too expensive. According to Hobby, the council could have passed the ordinance and put up signage at a later date, although carts could not have been used until then.

Mayor Mark Harrell and other council members said they were glad Hobby and city staff had done the research, so that carts could be considered quickly if a demand for them came up.

Hobby said Bainbridge Public Safety officers occasionally deal with people who operate golf carts or all-terrain vehicles on or across city streets.

Mayor Harrell said he, too, had received complaints.

“I think what we’re doing now works,” Hobby said. “There are no major problems where it happens and when there are, we deal with them.”

In a separate action, the council unanimously voted to approve an ordinance that will prohibit the wearing of pants or shorts below the waist in a manner which exposes undergarments. Local school officials previously said they are cracking down on both male and female fashions which expose undergarments.