Saturday, February 5, 2011

Alternate Side Parking Rules Go Changing

If it’s not a record, it should be. For the past 6 or 7 weeks we haven’t had to move our cars for street sweeping. Sure you’ve had to put in some intense aerobic shoveling if you took your car anywhere and probably some intense aerobic shoveling when you came back. Or, if tunneling didn’t work, maybe you scaled the ice battlements and soared to new parking heights (Your wheels might not touch actual pavement until Spring.). But whether you cross train into a snow barricaded space or cross road your vehicle up to the top of an icy outpost, for the last 6 weeks, alternate side parking rules have been dead and it was good.
Which logically brings me to the subject of Int 0375-2010, the law the City council has been sitting on since last Fall that would allow cars to park in an alternate side restricted time and place if the driver remains in the vehicle or if the street sweeper has already passed. This goes to the heart of the whole purpose of Alternate Side restrictions. Is it really, as defined and intended, for street sweeping? A waiting driver can move for the sweeper or deserves a ticket. And a driver taking a space that has already been swept is no obstacle to cleaner streets or clearer storm drains. Or has Alt Side been government appropriated into a game of revenue tag where uniformed tax collectors that stalk our streets are always “it.”
Int 0375-2010 is an opportunity for our City Council to preserve the original intent of Alternate Side restrictions and to return the words that our government uses to their actual meaning. This is especially important now as soon this hardened snow will start to melt. Very soon after, a whim of our Mayor will determine that Alternate Side rules are back in effect. Even though the snow may not be soft enough for plowing, or the streets clear enough for sweeping, we better be out there digging, because this Mayoral directive will unleash a locust of ticket agents out to recoup whatever revenue our city government thinks it has lost. Int 0375-2010 will help preserve the meaning and purpose of the Alt Side laws which should simply mean that if the plows are not plowing or the sweepers not sweeping, then the posse of tax agents rounded up by the Mayor can not be out tagging and bagging.
To help make this happen, to learn more, or just to sign the petition in support of this new law, try

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