For the Lakeside Leader
Big Lakes County has determined that driving golf carts on roads in county hamlets is illegal.
At its July 26 meeting, council accepted the advice of the county lawyer on the matter.
“That’s the law,” said councillor Ann Stewart.
County director of planning and development Pat Olansky told council in a written report: “The response (from the law firm) was that golf carts are considered miniature vehicles under provincial legislation and are not permitted on highways which would include county roads and sidewalks within the road allowance and plan.”
Council had considered allowing golf carts on hamlet streets after a request from Joussard resident Sheri Duchesneau. She noted at a public hearing that they are quieter than ATVs and seniors feel more comfortable driving them.
Despite the legal position, one councillor predicted the carts will still be used.
“They’re still driving them in Joussard and they’ll continue to drive them,” said Ed Podollan.
However, the county urges residents to respect the law.
“Because they are prohibited, and if we receive a complaint, the bylaw enforcement officer will enforce it,” CAO Roy Brideau said.
Included in Olansky’s report was the information that council may – by way of a bylaw – make exceptions to the provincial prohibition of off-highway vehicles on certain roads. (However, no suggestion was made at the meeting that council would consider doing this.)