City now removal signs ready |

City now removal signs ready

This winter new signs will regulate street-side parking throughout the city of South Lake Tahoe.

The initial idea was to eliminate winter roadside parking altogether, but strong community opposition prompted city officials into taking a milder, more concise approach to keeping streets accessible and clear of snow.

“When we originally brought this issue to the (City Council) in March, they expressed many concerns about the amended ordinance and the wording we used,” said Public Services Director Teri Jamin. “But after review by the Lodging Association and the South Lake Tahoe Chamber of Commerce, the language has been changed and received City Council’s blessing.”

The debate began when the public services department decided it was time to replace the city’s 15-year-old snow removal signs, Jamin said. In an effort to maximize snow clearing on city streets and reduce citations and towing, the department proposed eliminating street-side parking for the duration of the winter.

“We felt the old signage may have created some confusion especially among visitors,” explained street superintendent Scott Rogers.

However, complaints from councilmembers, business owners and residents prompted further review and the more lenient wording which was finally approved in July and written into the city code.

The 180 red-and-white signs posted around the city now read:

“No Parking on roadways or shoulders during snow removal operations until roads are clear to full width. Violators will be subject to $102 fine and/or towing.”

This is the third version for the signs which previously stated that, “Vehicles parked so as to interfere with snow removal equipment will be towed and cited.”

The revised version, Jamin explained, is clearer and lets people know that snow removal is not necessarily complete just because the plows have passed. Cutting back on roadside pileup, pushing back berms and snow blowing until the street reaches its full width are all part of the process.

During and after the first storm and snowfall, Jamin said violators of the new law will only receive a warning. But after that first storm, drivers will be fined and their cars possibly towed.

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