Tommy Mann Jr.
The Orange Leader
BRIDGE CITY —
Residents who own golf carts will be allowed to drive them on city streets as long they meet certain requirements.
City councilmembers for the City of Bridge City unanimously approved an ordinance which will allow for the operation of golf carts on city streets as long as certain criteria are met.
“Driving golf carts on city streets has been against the law, but it wasn’t heavily enforced unless there was an issue,” said Mayor Kirk Roccaforte. “During the summer, we start getting calls at the police department and City Hall about kids riding through the streets and running stop signs. We decided to create an ordinance which would allow golf carts to be legally driven on the streets and based it off of ordinances in Nederland and Port Neches, while adding our own touches to it.”
Roccaforte stated their are several requirements in order to legally operate a golf cart on city streets and roads in Bridge City.
First and foremost, the driver of the golf cart must have a valid Texas drivers license. The golf cart also must have headlights, mirrors, a reflective “slow moving” warning triangle sign on back, lights and insurance.
“Every person must be in a seat in the golf cart and the golf carts can only be driven from daylight to dusk,” Roccaforte added. “No one on council was against letting people drive golf carts in Bridge City, we just wanted to make it legal and make it as safe as possible to have them on the road.”
In other news, councilmembers approved the proposed tax rate for the 2013-2014 fiscal year. The new rate is $0.48345 per $100 valuation, which is a decrease of $0.00355 compared to the current tax rate. The maintenance and operation fund portion of the rate is $0.25910 per $100 valuation, and the interest and sinking rate is $0.22435 per $100 valuation.
“This is a lower tax rate than this past year,” said Jerry Jones, City Manager. “We will be able to raise more money for the city because there is more value out there in regards to the property.”
The city if anticipating an increase of revenue from property taxes of approximately $79,773, or an increase of 5.78 percent.
City council also amended its policy pertaining to rental feels and regulations for the Bridge City Community Center and Senior Citizen Hall.
Jones said the city has had the policy of not renting either facility to political groups in the past, and amended the policy to officially reflect that decision.