Homeowners Must Request Enforcement : Parking Law for Private Roads Passed

Times Staff Writer

The La Canada Flintridge City Council has given final approval to an ordinance that will allow enforcement of California motor vehicle code parking regulations on private streets and roads.

The council voted 4 to 0 to adopt the ordinance, which had been tentatively approved at a council meeting in December.

Under terms of the ordinance, homeowners who live along the 43 privately owned roadways in the city, where the vehicle code is not enforceable, can petition the city on a street-by-street basis to establish parking regulations. Enforcement would require the approval of a majority of the homeowners from each street.

Immediately after adopting the ordinance, the council passed a resolution to apply parking restrictions to Rancho Canada Road, whose residents were the first to request such action. The city in November had received a petition signed by all the homeowners on that street requesting enforcement of vehicle code parking regulations.

Consideration of the parking ordinance came up at a council meeting in November when Councilman Edmund Krause, who lives on Rancho Canada Road, proposed that the city take some action to alleviate what he said was a longstanding problem.

Because the roadways in question are the private property of the homeowners who live there, vehicle code regulations--with the exception of certain moving violations--do not apply as they do on public roads.

Many homeowners had complained to him, Krause said, about their inability to rely on law-enforcement officers to remove abandoned vehicles or tow away parked cars that blocked their driveways. Others had expressed fears that cars parked on narrow and winding streets could prevent or delay the passage of fire trucks and other large vehicles in the event of an emergency.

An earlier version of the ordinance, which called for enforcement of the entire vehicle code rather than just parking restrictions on 15 private streets and roads, was scrapped after it sparked a protest from some homeowners.

Those who opposed the earlier version said they feared indiscriminate ticketing from Sheriff's Department officers for minor violations of the vehicle code.

In other action, council members extended a moratorium on the establishment of any new businesses that would sell alcoholic beverages. The moratorium will last for six months while Planning Department staff members develop regulations that will give the city control over the issuance of liquor licenses.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World