Winchester approves ordinance allowing UTVs on village roads

By Ryne Turke on May 22, 2016 at 9:22am

Another municipality has approved the use of utility task vehicles on village roads.

Winchester Mayor Rex McIntyre says the village has allowed street legal golf carts on roads for years. McIntyre says the popular demand from the public and the recent golf cart/UTV actions passed by neighboring communities pushed the Winchester Village Board to approve the UTV ordinance on May 4th.

While Winchester’s UTV ordinance follows many of the same guidelines as Jacksonville’s, there are a few differences.

“I think we have a 30 mile-per-hour speed limit established. We are not going to allow the sport models that have the higher speeds. These are going to be used for people who actually use them for work,” says McIntyre.

McIntyre says those guidelines were established to increase safety in the village.

“People were concerned about being able to police them and that is one of the main reasons we aren’t allowing sport vehicles. One of our local women…her father has a  utility vehicle and she was very helpful in getting it passed. She brought in some literature and showed what was going on in surrounding areas. Plus, she showed the differences between UTV and sport vehicles,” notes McIntyre.

Utility task vehicles in Winchester will not be permitted on  highways, Main Street or around the downtown square.

McIntyre says nobody for the village has applied for a license at this time.

In other Winchester news, the farmer’s market is coming to the downtown square in a few weeks.

McIntyre says the farmer’s market has drawn some interest from the community and hopes it “picks up steam” by the end of the month.

“We would like to see some people from Calhoun bring up their peaches. It is not limited to just Winchester people,” says McIntyre.

Starting the first week of June, the farmers market will be open on Thursday evenings from 4-7 p.m.

Correction: We reported South Jacksonville passed a UTV ordinance, but the village has not voted on that issue at this time.