Paddock Lake to draft golf cart ordinance

golf-cart-sxc-Michal-Zacharzewski-webPaddock Lake staff will be drafting an ordinance to regulate the use of golf carts on village streets.

Village President Terry Burns introduced the issue at Tuesday’s Committee of the Whole meeting.

The use of golf carts in the village and how it should be regulated has been an on and off issue in the village for years, Burns said.

Many people do own golf carts and use them to travel to the lake and other in-village destinations, Burns said.

Burns presented the issue as having two options — decide how carts should be used and create an enforceable ordinance or ban them outright.

Burns said he favored regulation.

“I think we can work with something and allow them (carts),” Burns said. “Without any instruction, it’s a free for all now.”

Some of the possible requirements and restrictions found in other municipal ordinances cited by Burns included:

  • Requiring head and taillights.
  • Restricting when golf carts can be used.
  • Obeying all traffic signs and signals.
  • Requiring a valid driver’s license to operate a golf cart.
  • Requiring registration with the village.
  • Requiring insurance.

Having a specific golf cart ordinance will allow the sheriff’s department to enforce regulations, which is problematic now under state statutes, Burns said.

Some board members were reluctant to see an ordinance possibly spur more golf cart use.

“We’re not a golf community so I don’t see the need for golf carts,” said Trustee Barbara Brenner, adding that she felt the roads are too narrow and that carts are unsafe due to a lack of seatbelts.

Trustee Gary Kaddatz said he owns a golf cart that he uses, for example, to travel to Sentry instead of using a full-sized vehicle. He said he felt that cart owners would welcome regulation so those who misuse them can be ticketed.

Village administrator Tim Popanda said he would like to see headlights and tailights required so the vehicles were fully visible.

Burns suggested that staff develop an ordinance and bring it back to the board for further discussion before a vote is taken.



  1. Who do you think you are? says:

    To the Village of Paddock Lake! Who do you think you are thinking that you have the authority to allow an un-safe, un-licensable ‘vehicle’, and I use that term loosely, on public roads? Just because you have some small roads and think of your “Village” as a quaint little hamlet, (its not a summer-home community anymore) doesn’t give you the right to supersede state law. Requiring head lights and tail lights makes you feel better? What about seatbelts? Airbags?
    And how do you plan to keep them off of Highway 50 if you allow them ‘legally’ on your roads?
    Put this idea back in the garbage from where someone pulled it out of and tell those that have the carts that if they go anywhere further than the road in front of their house, they will get a ticket!

  2. ronald parker says:

    I think I woke up in America this morn. There are bigger problems then bending to someone’s private agenda. I say use true Democracy and take it to a vote of the citizens of Paddock Lake. We do not answer to the state, we answer to the voters of our good city and it’s people.

  3. Bob Brenner says:

    What is the Paddock Lake Village Board thinking?There responsibility is to provide
    there residents with a safe place to live and having unsafe golf carts running around is far from safe.They need to pass an ordinance that prohibits there use on roadways.Instead they want to make 20 residents happy and the other 2800
    residents miserable.What about the people jogging,walking there dogs,they have
    to keep a look out for oncoming golf carts.I would like to know how many villages
    towns,cities allow golf carts on there roadways in the State of WI. The answer
    would be 0.Golf carts are not made for the roadways and should be prohibited.

  4. James says:

    If President Burns wants to allow golf carts, will scooter wheel chairs be next? What about people that are drunk driving these things? Has anyone looked further into this? I think he was correct in saying “ban them outright”. What happens when a wheel from a golf cart hits a pot hole on a Paddock Lake road? The cart flips and someone gets hurt – who’s responsible? There’s way too many problems that can occur with a golf cart. And, if Kaddatz wants to take a golf cart to the store – more power to him. If he really wants to save fuel – ride a bike!

  5. Resident says:

    Are snowmobiles next??? This is a beach community we are about enjoying our summer here. I have never witness irresponsibility with the golf carts. I am a golf cart owner myself and I am all for rules and regulations. But taking them away would break my 7 year olds heart. he so enjoys taking the golf cart to the beach or taking his friends for a ride. I have lights and follow all traffic laws and give everyone else the right away. I live here because this town is different and comes together as a community. It will be very sad if we become just a boring regular town. Don’t take away something a lot of people enjoy because of grumpy people who don’t believe any longer in the magic of Paddock Lake!

  6. Joyce Slatner says:

    So is this new ordinance going to address all motorized vehicles? I see motorized go karts,wheelchairs,bikes,golf karts,tractors,scooters,and mini bikes zipping along our streets. Police in our Village will have their hands full chasing these scaly wags.

  7. Walk Away VoPL, Just Walk Away! says:

    There are state laws that govern golf carts and having them on roads is not allowed in Wisconsin. Go ahead and look it up, I did. Sure there are some Wis. Villages and cities that do have ordinances that allow them and regulate them to a certain degree, but even those ordinances violate state law. Examples include Brillion, Oconomowoc and my personal favorite, Prescott. Yes that’s Prescott Wisconsin, not Arizona. Prescott‘s ordinance goes on for over 5 pages regulating golf carts and then ends with this.
    “Disclaimer. Golf carts are not designed for nor manufactured to be used on public streets and the City neither advocates nor endorses the golf cart as a safe means of travel on public streets, roads and highways. The City in no way shall be liable for accidents, injuries or death involving the operation of golf cart.”
    “Assumption of risk. Any person, who owns, operates or rides upon a golf cart on a public street, road or highway within the City does so at his or her own risk and peril and assumes all liability resulting from the operation of the golf cart.”

    Now is this what you want??

    I can just see the lawyers lining up when the first 8 year old kid or 70 year young senior citizen riding in one meets up with a 17 year old kid in a pick-up truck that didn’t see them over the hood. The VoPL should let this dog die and forget that anybody ever brought it up. If there ever is an accident with the handful of carts that are out there, the law will deal with it. That’s the county guys, since you don’t have any cops in your village, right? And anyone who wants to rat on their neighbor is free to do so just like they do on the 4th of July when all the fireworks go off.


    Paddock Lake only has one officer on duty at a time.They have enough to do
    without having to go on Golf Cart complaints.I don’t think anyone has thought
    of the cost to the taxpayers to start this program or the cost of our Village
    Attorney,when these cases go to court.Iam sure the Village Board ,after getting
    all the facts will do the right thing and not allow Golf Carts on our roadways.

  9. Anthony Hansen says:

    What is this board thinking! Yes Paddock Lake is a smaller family friendly summer village but what about safety! Making golf cart owners have headlights and drivers licenses does not replace the fact that they don’t have air bags, seatbelts, turn signals, working horns ect. Before the board worries about making a few happy think about what’s best for the majority of your residents! Not just the weekend worriers, like trustee brenner said “we’re not a golf course community” reasons like this is why I am running for Village Trustee! Some members of our current board do not think what is best for the residents of this village

  10. Good thing says:

    Good thing we have Anthony running for trustee! Maybe we should teach him to spell warriors correctly before we let him on the ballot!

  11. FYI To Paddock Lake Village Board says:

    Are you aware there are 1260 Towns,407 Villages,190 Cities in the State of
    Wisconsin and less than 3% allow the use of golf carts on public roadways.
    That should be a BIG RED FLAG.Golf Carts are designed specifically for use
    off public roads.Why would you allow a vehicle to operate on our roadways
    that have no safety mandates required by the manufactuer?
    The program to allow golf carts would cost the tax payers thousands of dollars
    when all said and done.I,as a resident of the Village,VOTE NO
    President Burns,you will be opening a can of worms with no bottom!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. FYI Village of Paddock Lake says:

    In the State of Wisconsin there are over 1867 Villages,Towns,and Cities.Less than 2% of them allow golf carts on their roadways.That should raise a RED FLAG!!!Golf Carts are designed specifically for use OFF PUBLIC ROADS due to not having the proper safety equipment.
    The cost to the taxpayers of this Village for a program to allow the golf carts would run into thousands of dollars when all is said and done.I as a taxpayer say NO!! President Burns,you would be opening a can of worms that has no bottom in site!!!!!!!!

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