WINNEBAGO, Ill. (WTVO) — Residents will be seeing more ATVs as the area heads into the summer months, but some stateline cities are discussing if they will be allowed on roads.
There is a mix of opinions, and that is why many have petitioned to have rules and regulations so they and others can be safe. Places like the Village of Winnebago are carefully looking at both sides.
“We are just trying to figure out what may or may not work in the village, and want to make sure what we decide is really what the majority of people want in the village,” said Frank Eubank, village president for the Village of Winnebago.
The Village of Winnebago will be holding a second public forum on Wednesday, discussing if UTVs and ATVs can be driven on the streets. Eubank said that they had really good insight during the first meeting.
“The petition, I think, was looking at all types of vehicles, anywhere from golf carts up to the big UTVs,” Eubank said.
Winnebago is looking at other local cities where ATVs are legal, like Rochelle, to see what works, according to Eubank.
“We see them here and there, you know, going around town or headed to the park or off to get ice cream, and it’s just a fun quality of life bonus for our residents I think,” said Jenny Thompson, director of community engagement for the City of Rochelle.
Rochelle put in their ordinance almost two years ago. Thompson said that they currently have 43 registered UTV and ATVs, and it has been going well so far.
“They have to have turn signals, rearview mirror, has a horn, seat belts and the different safety features,” Thompson said. “They have to obtain a permit.”
Eubank now hopes to follow suit. He said that residents could soon see the vehicles rolling down the streets.
“Really what we are trying to do is see what… what the benefits would be of it and what the negative aspects [would] be of having these vehicles, and just trying to find out what makes sense in the Village of Winnebago,” Eubank said.
Residents can weigh in at Wednesday night’s 6 p.m. meeting at Winnebago High School, 304 E McNair Rd. The village board will take it up on June 13.