March 23, 2024 at 12:59 p.m.
Cass County Board:

Third reading of new ATV ordinance April 16



By By Kyndra Johnson of the Press-Citizen | Comments: 0 | Leave a comment

   BACKUS—The regular meeting held Tuesday, Mar. 19 was another well publicly attended meeting with a few citizens still voicing concern over the proposed ordinance regarding regulation of all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) on county highways and public right of ways. 

   Some of the main concerns expressed were speed limits, education, youth drivers on roadway and definition of weight of ATVs in ordinance. Andy Bray spoke first by stating he was against the ordinance due to his feelings of having young kids, ages 12-15, on busy county roads. Another item Bray brought up was his concern for speed limits. He mentioned out of the eight surrounding counties, two have set speed limits for ATVs and inquired if there would be signs posted at county lines.

   Paul Vashro, Woodtick Wheelers President, mentioned the ordinance currently defines ATVs as having a total dry weight of 2,000 pounds or less. He mentioned currently the state legislature is reviewing their statutes to change the weight to 3,000 pounds or less due to manufacturers making the machines heavier.

   Craig Wadzink, Woodtick Wheelers Vice President, mentioned he was fully supportive of moving ATVs out of the ditches, but also shared Bray’s concern with youth being on paved roads. Wadzink shared some statewide statistics from 2023 stating there were 15 fatalities out of 14 accidents involving ATVs. Eleven of these accidents were roll-overs and nine of the accidents happened at public right of ways. Both Bray and Wadzink mentioned they felt a need for reevaluation after six to twelve months of the policy. 

   After the public hearing was closed, the commissioners addressed those concerns. Cass County Lieutenant Brad Rittgers mentioned currently the Woodtick Wheelers offer three hands-on ATV safety courses per year and Over the Hill Gang in Outing offers one hands-on ATV course. Currently state law requires that anyone born after July 1, 1987 must possess a valid all-terrain safety certificate issued by the commissioner of natural resources and must have a valid driver’s license or be accompanied by a person over 18 years old with a valid driver’s license. This can be obtained through an on-line class. Currently youth ages 12 - 15 years old are also required to attend the hands-on ATV course along with the on-line course.

   Cass County Administrator Josh Stevenson informed the board due to new wording in the ordinance another public hearing will be required if the board were to accept the proposed changes. The wording change is number two under the Operation of All-Terrain Vehicles on County Roads in Cass County and was requested by the ordinance committee along with the County Engineer. It was noted this change was to allow riders to choose to ride on the shoulder of a road when capable which would allow for safer passage of vehicles on heavily traveled roads.

   Commissioner Jeff Peterson made the motion to approve the third reading with the language changes and establish another public hearing during the regular April 16, 2024 board meeting to be held at the Land Department in Backus. Commissioner Rick Haaland seconded the motion, with all members present approving unanimously.


Comments:

You must login to comment.

LONGVILLE WEATHER

WEATHER SPONSORED BY

Events

April

SU
MO
TU
WE
TH
FR
SA
31
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
28
29
30
1
2
3
4
SUN
MON
TUE
WED
THU
FRI
SAT
SUN MON TUE WED THU FRI SAT
31 1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 1 2 3 4

To Submit an Event Sign in first

Today's Events

No calendar events have been scheduled for today.

Facebook