Q: Is it legal to drive an ATV or golf cart on a public highway?
A: "The only way is if the vehicle is properly licensed," said Lt. Don Engler of the Payson Police Department. And the only way such vehicles can be licensed is if they have all the equipment required of normal vehicles. The only exception to this rule, Engler explained, is golf carts that are operated on roadways immediately adjacent to golf courses. And by the way, operators must have valid drivers' licenses to operate an ATV or golf cart on a public street.
Q: I noticed the Payson Town Council has allotted $12,000 for a police volunteer program. Why put that money into a volunteer program instead of an officer reserve program? Certified police officer reserves can cover shifts and vacations and alleviate some of the officer overtime the town now has to pay out.
A: "Mainly because we can put our volunteers on the road right away and use them to supplement and enhance our law enforcement," said Payson Police Department Lt. Don Engler. "Volunteers are not required to attend the same police academy a reserve officer has to," he said. Reserve officers have to have the same 520 hours of academy training required of regular police officers. Another drawback for the reserve program, Engler said, is that it's hard to find people in Payson who aren't working other jobs. "Basically, we'll take all the reserves we can get," he said. "So volunteers aren't taking any police officer jobs. They're simply there to support the police officers or reserve officers."
Q: Is it true that the Payson Town Council has refused to fund the DARE program for the coming fiscal year? My son was in the first graduating class, and I can't believe our town would give up such a valuable program.
A: During a recent town council budget meeting, the majority of the council was very receptive to saving the program, reports Lt. Don Engler of the Payson Police Department. "We have joined the school district to apply for a grant for additional school resource officers, and we're kind of in a holding pattern to see if we get that funding," Engler said. "If we do, the council indicated it would like to see those officers teaching the DARE program." While it wasn't put to a formal vote, Engler thinks the support exists on the council to continue town funding in the event the grant doesn't come through.
Call 474-5251, ext. 147, to reach Roundup's What's Up? line. Leave your question on the answering machine and we'll try to find the answer.