City working on truck route adoption
By Jerry W. Kram
One of the big questions around New Town lately has been, "with the truck bypass completed, why are there still so many trucks on Main Street?" The New Town City Council took a step in answering that question at its regular meeting Dec. 17.
The problem is one of regulations. Prior to the construction of the bypass, Main Street was designated as primary truck route through New Town. The City Council needs to change that designation before the New Town City Police Department and the Three Affiliated Tribes Police Department can start ticketing trucks that drive through New Town.
City Attorney Bill Woods presented the council with a draft ordinance that will change New Town’s official Truck Route from Main Street to North Dakota Highway 23B, which is the state’s designation for the New Town bypass. The ordinance also increases the top fine for disobeying the rule from $1,000 to $1,500. The council passed the first reading of the ordinance on a unanimous vote. The ordinance still has to pass a second reading before it can be adopted. That will occur at the council’s next regular meeting on Jan. 21.
City Coordinator Daryl Lyson said the signage for the truck route, including notice of a fine for violators was expected to arrive by the end of the week. Woods told Lyson that the signs could be put up immediately. However, police officers won’t be able to start writing tickets to violators until the the ordinance is officially adopted in January. They can start stopping trucks and giving warnings to let truckers know the rules will be changing next month.