July 21, 2011 |

ATV ordinance has benefits

During the upcoming borough assembly meeting of July 26 the fate of the borough code permitting ATV usage on the streets in your neighborhood and your town will be determined. I have discussed the code and its contents with many of you and the response has been enthusiastic. My research has been thorough and has resulted in a comprehensive code designed for safe and responsible operation of ATVs and snowmachines both on and off borough roads and streets. One person wants to require helmets. Perhaps requiring a helmet for those under 18 years of age like the state motorcycle law would be a good idea. The code will certainly be modified over time. Now, however, is the time to show your support for the code by coming to the assembly meeting. For clarification, the code would only permit operators possessing a state driver’s license operating an insured borough and state licensed ATV to operate on borough roads and streets. Maximum speeds are set at 25 mph. State roads are off limits except to cross. As I stated in my cover letter to the assembly back in early June, "This is an idea whose time has come." Hundreds of towns and cities across Alaska and the nation permit ATVs on their streets and ours should as well. It is a good fit for Haines. Come and show your support. The benefits are obvious and long lasting.

Jim Shook