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Tiffin City Council approves ordinance allowing golf carts, utility vehicles on streets




Photo by Eric Brehm on Unsplash

Tiffin, Ohio — During Monday’s Tiffin City Council meeting, councilmembers approved a proposal that will pave the way for the operation of under-speed vehicles, commonly known as golf carts, and utility vehicles within the City of Tiffin.

The new ordinance, labeled Ordinance No. 23-30, establishes regulations and guidelines for the usage of these vehicles on city streets. The implementation of this ordinance is set to take effect on July 5, 2023.

Under the newly approved ordinance, individuals who wish to operate an under-speed or utility vehicle within the city limits must have their vehicle inspected by the Tiffin Police Department. The inspection process requires vehicle owners to schedule an appointment at their City of Tiffin residence. Those residing outside the city limits are required to transport their vehicle to the Tiffin Police Department for inspection. Inspection appointments are available from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, and you can sign up for an inspection appointment by filling out the form at this link.

The inspection itself will be conducted by the Chief of Police or a designated representative who will visit the residence on a scheduled date and time. If the vehicle meets the compliance standards set by the State of Ohio for motor vehicles, as well as the requirements outlined in Chapter 343 of the Tiffin Codified Ordinances, a certificate of compliance will be issued. Additionally, the owner or operator must provide proof of liability insurance for the vehicle before receiving the certificate. A $25 inspection fee is due at the time of inspection.

Furthermore, individuals operating under-speed vehicles or utility vehicles within the City of Tiffin must possess a valid driver’s license and comply with all state traffic laws and applicable sections of the City of Tiffin ordinances. Under-speed vehicles are restricted to streets with a speed limit of 25 mph or less, while utility vehicles are allowed on streets with a speed limit of 35 mph or less. Crossing intersections with higher speeds is permitted as long as the vehicle remains on a street within the designated speed limit.

The ordinance also includes restrictions regarding passenger criteria and the use of under-speed vehicles on public sidewalks, walking paths, and multi-use trails. Any child falling under the child restraint criteria specified by Ohio R.C. 4511.81 or related provisions is prohibited from being a passenger in an under-speed vehicle operated on any City street or public area.

Non-compliance with the regulations outlined in Chapter 343 will result in penalties. A first offense constitutes a minor misdemeanor, a second offense within one year after the first offense is considered a misdemeanor of the fourth degree, and subsequent offenses within one year after the first offense are classified as misdemeanors of the third degree, according to the Tiffin Police Department.

For more information, visit the City of Tiffin website here.

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