New parking rules

A man shovels a channel for water to travel through the hard-frozen snow to reach the street sewer in this photo taken in February 2017 in downtown Payette. A new ordinance repeals the requirement for licensed contractors to provide snow removal on private property when the property owner is unable to do so.

The City of Payette is preparing to add notes to ‘no parking signs’ throughout the city, as new parking rules are set to take effect. At the Jan. 6 regular meeting, the Payette City Council gave its second reading of Ordinance 1471. This updates the times and places where parking is allowed within city limits, as well as repeals the requirement for licensed contractors to provide snow removal on private property when the property owner is unable to do so.

Among changes to parking rules are:

• Parking on a bike path, adjacent to yellow-painted curbs or in front of a mailbox is prohibited.

• Vehicles left parked in violation after 24 hours are subject to removal at owner’s expense year round. This was previously enforced February to November.

• The one-ton capacity limit for trucks and vans is repealed.

Outgoing Council member Kathy Dodson reiterated her view that the possibility of violations being counted as misdemeanors needed to be removed and treated as infraction.

“I think it should be changed to an infraction and not a misdemeanor,” Dodson expressed. “I think a parking violation should not be a misdemeanor.”

Outgoing Council member Craig Jensen expressed concern about the wording of spacing requirements. He suggested it would be a bother for enforcement officers to have to measure how close cars are parked to mailboxes.

“I think it would still accomplish the purpose,” Jensen said.

Mayor Jeff Williams reminded the council the ordinance is on the agenda because of a neighborhood spat brought up by Police Chief John Plaza at the council’s Dec. 16 meeting.

“It’ll just give [police] officers another option in enforcing it,” Williams said.

Kee suggested moving the ordinance to a third reading, but did not make a motion to do so.

Dodson made the motion to approve the ordinance with these exceptions: Instead of a 10-foot requirement, vehicles cannot park immediately in front of a mailbox or driveway, and the misdemeanor provision reduced to an infraction.

Massey seconded.

The vote was 5-1, with only Council member Mike Kee voting against, thus the motion carried.

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