ATV restrictions considered in Hampton
More than 300 people packed the Hampton Community Center on Tuesday night to urge Hampton officials to accelerate — or halt — steps to restrict all-terrain vehicles in the township.
“I cannot tell you the agony it has been to live in my home,” Carol Power said. “To get peace, I have to leave.”
Power said her neighbors, who have one acre, ride vehicles on their property, and she cannot even hear her television.
Council is considering whether to limit the use of ATVs, snowmobiles and dirt bikes from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on properties no smaller than five acres, with the written permission of the properties’ owners. The vehicles could not be operated within 250 feet of a residence.
Mechanized vehicles used for landscaping, such as lawn mowers and snow blowers, would be exempt from the new rules.
David Primrose of Hampton attended the meeting to ask officials to reconsider the parameters of the restrictions.
“I bought a quad to take care of my driveway,” said Primrose, who has a 350-foot driveway and uses his ATV to haul garbage to the road and clear snow.
“I don’t have five acres, I have three.”
Unlicensed, motorized, off-road vehicles are unrestricted in Hampton. Council wants to regulate their use based on complaints from residents about the dust and noise the vehicles generate.
“We’re hearing from four neighborhoods impacted,” council President Vic Son said last month. “Our goal is not to prohibit (off-road vehicles), but to come up with a compromise.”
Township solicitor Vincent Tucceri advised council to put any restrictions on off-road vehicles in the zoning ordinance as amendments subject to a public hearing, instead of adopting a stand-alone ordinance without a hearing.
“We know there are people riding responsibly, and we don’t want to make that illegal,” said Dean Hess, chairman of the Hampton Planning Commission, who moderated the meeting.
A public hearing on the restrictions will be scheduled, perhaps in January.
Deborah Deasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6369 or firstname.lastname@example.org.