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McHenry City Council to discuss allowing golf carts on city roads, upcoming property tax levy

Council also will discuss property tax levy at Monday meeting

McHenry City Administrator Derik Morefield (left) and Mayor Wayne Jett attend a City Council meeting April 15.
McHenry City Administrator Derik Morefield (left) and Mayor Wayne Jett attend a City Council meeting April 15.

McHenry City Council will meet Monday to consider its tax levy and discuss allowing non-highway vehicles such as golf carts to drive on city roadways.

Multiple residents have asked the city about an ordinance that would allow non-highway vehicles to operate on McHenry roads. Huntley and Fox River Grove both allow golf carts to drive on the roadway and Johnsburg allows golf carts, utility task vehicles and “side by side” vehicles to drive on village roads, according to McHenry city documents.

Off-highway vehicles must have at least brakes, a steering wheel, tires, a rear view mirror, red reflectorized warning devices in the front and rear, a slow moving emblem – as required of other vehicles under state law – on the rear of the non-highway vehicle,
a headlight that emits a white light visible from a distance of 500 feet to the front, a tail lamp that emits a red light visible from at least 100 feet from the rear, brake lights, and turn signals.

The vehicles would have to stay on city roads where the speed limit is 35 mph or less, according to city documents.

Drivers would have to register the vehicle, allow police to inspect it, have a valid driver’s license and insurance, and obey all state and local traffic laws while operating the vehicles.

In the past five years, McHenry Police Department has investigated two incidents involving drivers of non-highway vehicles. In 2018, a person was driving a golf cart in McHenry’s Country Club subdivision and fell out. The driver suffered a head injury and was later charged with driving under the influence. The second instance took place in 2019 when a 31 year-old was hanging off the back of a golf cart driving through the same subdivision and fell off. The driver was cited for operating a non-highway vehicle on the roadway.

The item is on the agenda for discussion only.

City Council members will also discuss and approve an estimate for its upcoming property tax levy.

The proposed resolution would keep the tax levy flat, set at $4.6 million. The city has kept the levy flat since 2011, according to city documents.

The McHenry City Council will meet 7 p.m. Monday at the municipal building, 333 S. Green St.

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