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Golf cart issue on course for study

February 18, 2009
By Ron Larsen Staff Writer

NEW ULM - A sub-committee, formed by the New Ulm City Council, will review the pros and cons of driving golf carts on city streets and report its findings to the city's Safety Commission, the council decided Tuesday night.

As City Manager Brian Gramentz noted, the issue was raised in 2008 when gasoline was about $4 a gallon. The city council then passed the buck to the "new" council by scheduling the issue to be revisited in February 2009, Gramentz said.

"I think it's something that is worth investigating. It would save gasoline," Councilor Todd Olson said.

Councilor Les Schultz agreed that it was worth discussing.

But, the councilors also agreed that there should be some deliberation before taking action. So, the decision was made to create a sub-committee to study the matter and make a recommendation to the city's Safety Commission.

At this point, City Attorney Hugh Nierengarten interjected that the draft ordinance proposal includes ATVs "so I'm wondering if you want us to include ATVs?"

"There's also electric vehicles," Gramentz noted.

When asked what the difference was, "the utility vehicle can go 60 miles an hour and golf carts can't," Nierengarten responded.

The answer from the council was, yes, they wanted the sub-committee to include them.

The subcommittee - which includes Councilors Olson and Schultz, Gramentz, Nierengarten and Police Chief Myron Wieland - will sift through all the information and make a recommendation to the Safety Commission.

The council also approved on-sale wine, 3.2 percent malt liquor and annual on-sale intoxicating malt liquor permit for Lola's Larkspur Market, LLC, which will be operated by Lacey Lueth of Mankato.

In a related matter, Larkspur building owners Jeff Gulden and Larry Mack got the council to rescind the termination of the easement that allows the exterior deck to remain in place. The council gave them until April to make needed repairs on the deck which will be used by Lola's Larkspur Market.

In other action, the council:

- Set the date of April 7th at 6 p.m. for the annual public information meeting on the city's storm water pollution prevention program in the City Hall council chambers.

- Accepted a $2,200 cash donation from the Community And Seniors Together (CAST) to co-sponsor and offset expenses related to the 2008 "Senior Sneakers" exercise program held in the Recreation Center.

- Authorized the New Ulm Fire Department Rescue Squad to provide services to the Flying Dutchmen Motorcycle Club, and the City of New Ulm to be the fiscal agent for the New Ulm Retail Economic Development Corporation on a Blandin Foundation "Minnesota Community Broadband" grant.

Ron Larsen can be reached at



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