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Oakwood OKs parking ordinance
Council members give approval with 'reservation'
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Oakwood City Council unanimously, but unsmoothly, gave its first OK Monday night to an ordinance restricting parking in residential areas.

A few members said they had some issues with the ordinance, but they didn’t go into much detail.

“Without going into any particulars, I would like the minutes to note that I’m making a mental reservation on this subject,” Councilman Montie Robinson said.

Councilman Sam Evans followed by saying, “We need to come up with a policy that’s going to be fair to everybody and would be something we would go ahead and enforce.”

And then Councilwoman Martha Collins said “I just have mixed emotions” before casting a yes vote.

The ordinance particularly would change city code to allow no more than 35 percent of the front yard of a single-family residence to be used for parking, with two additional parking spaces permitted to the side or rear of a residence.

Also, all vehicles must be parked on an all-weather surface.

There’s no wording in the city’s code now to limit the number of cars parked in front of a house.

The ordinance also addresses recreational and commercial vehicles, including school buses. Those vehicles would have to be parked to the side or rear of a residence on all-weather surfacing. Current city code only addresses recreational vehicles.

Concern was voiced over whether or not homeowners with limited property would be able to fit those particular vehicles to the side or in the backyard.

Overall, the ordinance has been hashed out at several City Council and Oakwood Planning Commission meetings, with concerns ranging from enforcement to compliance.

At past meetings, Brown has showed pictures of various houses in the community with cars strewn across their front lawns.

Meanwhile, the public has been quiet on the issue. In addition to the no-show public hearing,City Manager Stan Brown said he has gotten little feedback.

“The only response I’ve had is a couple of emails from people who said they supported it,” he said.

Approval of the ordinance will require two affirmative votes before it would become effective. The final vote could take place in May, Brown said.

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