Woman asks Craig City Council to allow ATVs on city streets
DeLaine Brown was prepared for the Craig City Council meeting Tuesday.
Brown, along with about seven others, attended the council's meeting with a request: allow residents to register all-terrain vehicles and off-highway vehicles with the city so they may drive them on city streets.
As she addressed the council, Brown showed the breadth of work she and others did before engaging city officials.
She had a three-page draft ordinance, written by her and other supporters, allowing ATV and OHV travel.
She had copies of such ordinances from four different cities, including those in Minnesota and Utah, plus various state documents from Colorado State Parks, Wyoming and Utah.
Brown submitted a 21-page packet to city officials and spoke directly about what she wants.
"You've done a ton of homework," Craig Mayor Don Jones said.
He asked City Attorney Kenney Wohl to work on drafting an ordinance the council could consider in the future.
From the beginning of her presentation, Brown made it clear she and others she worked with didn't want to allow any ATVs on just any street.
To do so would be irresponsible and dangerous, she said.
Her proposal is for residents interested in using ATVs or OHVs to commute around the city to first register their vehicle with the city, insure it for street travel and make sure it had necessary traffic equipment such as headlamps, tail lamps, reflectors, a horn, muffler and windshield.
Brown's proposed ordinance also would prevent any ATV or OHV from traveling on Yampa Avenue or Victory Way except to cross, and prevent any such vehicles from traveling above 45 miles per hour.
When asked why the issue was important to her, Brown said she had been to other communities where it was legal and it made traveling short distances easier and less expensive without causing anyone or anything harm.
"With today's economy, who wouldn't welcome a chance to go to the store with a more fuel-efficient ATV instead of firing up their more gas-guzzling four-by-four?" Brown said.
She added that ATVs already are legal inside Craig in certain instances, such as Wyoming residents who drive theirs to town and have Wyoming plates or if a person uses it for agriculture purposes.
"We just want to make what's legal for some, legal for everyone," Brown said.
No city officials spoke against Brown's proposal, though the mayor said the Craig Police Department would have to figure out how to logistically handle ATV registrations.
It was by far the least contentious resident-driven issue city officials have dealt with recently.
In the past two weeks, the council has deliberated on medical marijuana, livestock in residential neighborhoods, revising its noise ordinance and potentially revising its planning and zoning codes.
Each of those issues drew more residents to council meetings than most any other meeting in the past few years. The latter also brought on criticism from some residents that city officials, at least in the past, have lied to residents and played favorites with wealthy community members and developers.