By Barbie Porter


Vergas residents have requested the planning commission address all-terrain vehicles riding on private property.

During its monthly meeting on Monday, March 22, commission members were made aware that some ATV drivers are utilizing people’s lawns to come into the city.

It was noted state statutes do not permit ATVs on the roadway, unless a city ordinance is in place to allow them. The ATV must ride on the slope of the ditch, but once in town that slope is private property.

The commission members recognized the ATV riders frequent businesses and that is appreciated. They discussed creating a plan that outlines designated streets for ATVs to access downtown, as well as creating a speed limit for those vehicles. It was noted the city currently has a caveat for golf carts to use on streets, and that policy could be reviewed for building a similar plan for ATVs.

While the commission reviews and considers an ATV route, they agreed riding on private property in the meantime is not OK. Property owners with concerns should notify the county sheriff.

The commission also discussed East Lake Street, which has seen better days. This spring, as trucks and other vehicles use it, ruts have been created in the gravel road. 

Franklin Fence, which owns property at 151 East Lake Street, requested installing two gates. The gates would limit access to the dirt road. The commission recommended the council approve with the stipulation that the city could require the gate on city property be opened or removed at anytime. The motion also included a note to review the road structure to see what improvements need to be made to accommodate the increased traffic flow due to the business storage location.

In other news

• The commission agreed to discuss an inspection of a property that has had ongoing violations and has yet to complete task items on a court order to correct nuisance.

• A letter with the city ordinance was approved to be sent to a dog owner in the city that has allowed its pets to run free on several occasions.

Lammers said if the city crew is available, and able, they can pick up the animal and take it to a location in Perham. There is a fee that starts at $25 and doubles every time the animal is brought to the facility.

• The commission was informed the truck route through the city was approved by the county, so that is completed and signs will be posted.