Local News

Greencastle council tables UTV ordinance again

Since November, the Greencastle Common Council has kicked around an ordinance pertaining to the use of utility terrain vehicles on city streets. 

The measure was first proposed by former Councilman Cody Eckert last November, stating he was introducing a proposed ordinance aimed at providing uniformity and flexibility for residents who did not want to use cars. After seeing the measure tabled in December and January, the Common Council decided Thursday it still needs more time to decide what to do, again voting 5-1 to table the measure. Councilman Vincent Aguirre voted against the decision, while councilman Darrel Thomas was absent. The decision to punt a decision another month came after Aguirre made a motion to pass the ordinance. That motion died for lack of a second. 

The fact the council opted not to act did not sit well with either Aguirre, who admitted he was "frustrated" after the vote.



Aguirre, who represents the 4th Ward, said he ran for council to get things done. 

"I ran to get things done, and it is hampering our ability to do anything. I am always going to focus on hearing from my constituents and I think that's really important," said Aguirre. 

He said it is also time for the council to move on to other important issues. 



Greencastle Mayor Lynda Dunbar was also in favor of the ordinance, telling the council if a vote were tied she would not hesitate to vote in favor for it. Dunbar told the council she felt like it would be a nightmare regardless and one that the town would have to enforce. She also told council she believed it would be a huge economic boom to the town. 

"We are missing the boat. I am for them," Dunbar told the council. 

After the meeting, Dunbar echoed Aguirre's sentiments. 



The decision to table the meeting hinged on several council members concerns about whether or not the city will have to place signage on every city street pertaining to the ordinance. 

Councilman David Mastin, who represents the 1st Ward, said he reached out to a councilman he knows from Brazil to ask about the ordinance there. 

"Signage is a big issue. I am opposed to signs everywhere," Mastin said. 

Mastin said he wanted to wait to get guidance from Indiana State Rep. Beau Baird, who represents Putnam County, as well as a ruling from Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita's office on the signs. 

Greencastle town attorney Laurie Hardwick said it was her interpretation of state statute the signs must be on every city street. 

Councilman Mark Hammer said he was concerned about the ordinance being "full of rules and regulations." 

After several more minutes of debate, Aguirre said he hadn't a reason for the council not to vote on the matter.

"I agree it is cumbersome, but it is also cumbersome to come back monthly," Aguirre said. 

Councilwoman Tina Nicholson, who represents the 3rd Ward, said the council wants to pass the measure, but that it is stuck on the signs. 

"It doesn't sound like it," Aguirre said.  

One resident agreed.

"We can't bring them into Greencastle, so we will go elsewhere. We'll go anywhere that is happy to let us in," the resident said. 

Dunbar said it was her hope she made it clear to council she was ready to make a decision and move on. 

"It's their right. They were voted to make and cast their votes, but I would've been ready to cast a vote. I am for it. I believe it will do good things for the city," Dunbar said.








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