The final reading of a proposal to limit dynamic braking systems in Fall River County was tabled last week over concerns that the county would not be able to selectively decide the locations where the ordinance would be in effect.
Commissioner Paul Nabholz said an email he received on the matter makes it appear that the state will install signs forbidding their use on state highways upon entrance to Fall River County, but not necessarily in the areas the commissioners had previously discussed.
Fall River County Commissioners first considered the proposal in July, hoping that by forbidding the use of unmuffled dynamic braking systems it could reduce noise in more populated areas of the county. Dynamic braking systems allow diesel vehicle to slow down using the vehicle’s engine rather than service brakes. The county’s proposed ordinance would still allow their use to avoid imminent danger and on emergency vehicles. As discussions have evolved in recent months, the commissioners also proposed a fine schedule, including a $250 fine for the first offense.
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Wes Grimes, representing the management of Fall River Feedlot, said the business is adamantly opposed to the ordinance and believes the fee schedule for violations is excessive. Cindy Brunson also expressed concern about the ordinance and the impact it would have on area agricultural producers.
Commissioner Joe Falkenburg had previously said that areas where the unmuffled braking systems would be prohibited could include Highway 385 southbound into Hot Springs, the Highway 18 bypass and Highway 79 heading south into Maverick Junction.
The possibility that the ordinance would be county-wide with signs at county lines prompted the commissioners to table the matter for one more meeting in search of clarification.