Proposed Golf Cart Ordinance To Be Similar To ATV Ordinance; Traffic Lights To Stay For Now

Date posted - February 2, 2012

The Sheldon City Council will not ask for any immediate changes in the stoplights at Sheldon’s downtown intersection, but there could be changes in the future.

At Wednesday’s meeting council member Dave Popkes strongly advocated replacing the stoplights with stop signs. He said this would save forty-three dollars a month on the cost of electricity. He also said that many people disobey the stoplights and run right through them. Brad Hindt told the council that people have asked him why the council was considering the change.

Ron Rensink thought the city should wait to see how this fits into the street-scape plan, and Greg Geels agreed. Then Popkes made a motion to have the city remove the stoplights the next time they have mechanical problems that would be costly to correct. All the council members except Popkes voted against this motion because the City Manager advised that the council had given this directive to the city some time ago.

While on the subject of traffic control, the council heard accident counts on four intersections on 6th street. Specifically at the 6th street intersections with third, fourth, seventh and eighth avenues. This had been requested by Brad Hindt. The data for the period from 2001 to 2010 showed an average of about one accident per year at each intersection. The cause of most of the accidents was the failure to obey the yield sign.

Public Works Director Todd Uhl said he had done some research, and the most common cause of accidents at intersections controlled by a stop sign is the failure to obey the stop sign. Therefore, the staff feels that stop signs at these intersections would not make much difference. Greg Geels questioned whether we need more stop signs, saying it can be too much of a good thing. No action was taken by the council.

On the subject of the use of golf carts on city streets, the council asked the City Attorney to incorporate language into the proposed ordinance which would be similar to the ATV ordinance. This will be reviewed at the second reading of the ordinance at the next council meeting.

In other business the council approved the erection of ‘no parking’ signs on the West side of North 21st avenue, adjacent to the new Hy-Vee property. This had been requested by Mid-American Energy to make it easier for their trucks to move from their building to the Highway. The City Manager told the council that the Hy-Vee manager had no objection to this proposal.

And, the council wound up the meeting with a closed session on the possible purchase of property. No action was taken after that session.

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