BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (AP) - Whether they are owned or rented, golf carts are a big part of life in old town Bay St. Louis. It's something residents like Lana Noonan say leads to preferential treatment.
"I don't mind if they're on the street, I just want us to have a level playing field," said Noonan.
Noonan is the chairwoman for the Hancock county Alliance for Better Government. She believes people driving golf carts aren't being held to the same standard as those driving cars.
"I think the way to handle this is for the state legislature to construct some rules of the roads for the golf carts," Noonan said.
The Bay St. Louis Police Department is aware of the concerns raised by Noonan. Captain Wes Mayley says the department is working with the new city council to develop rules for golf carts on city roads.
"We understand their place here in this city, and would like to see some kind of privatized bill or local ordinance pushed and passed in order to lawfully allow the golf carts to be used in the streets," said Mayley.
The biggest trouble is when the sun goes down in old town Bay St. Louis. Even golf cart owners like William McCandless say the streets become dangerous, especially on the weekend.
"It's just basically out of control," McCandless said, "The sidewalks are blocked, you can't get through. People are having a hard time getting around."
Police officers patrol the area to try to keep the carts where they belong.
"The police department has and always will focus on the safety aspect of the golf carts," Mayley said.
City Council members have taken several calls in the first weeks of this new term, and are researching the best ways to handle the golf carts. Mayley believes they can work together to find a solution.
"We are looking forward to working with them to see if we can finally get something adopted," Mayley said.