Calera restricts parking on roads, says yes to bingo

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Calera City Council members passed legislation recently that will make parking on the side of the road virtually impossible.

Mayor George Roy and the city council members gave their unanimous approval to an ordinance that will restrict where and when cars can be parked on roadways within the city limits.

&uot;If we need to get an emergency vehicle into a neighborhood or subdivision and there are cars parked on the street that hinder that, we have a problem,&uot; Mayor Roy said.

&uot;We’re trying to put some teeth into trying to keep our streets open.&uot;

The ordinance will cover all major roads throughout Calera as well as side streets and roads that go through subdivisions and neighborhoods.

&uot;Garbage trucks are having a hard time getting their job done as well as postal workers and all emergency vehicles,&uot; city council member David Bradshaw said.

The ordinance restricts the use of roads for overnight parking within the city limits, except where a person has nowhere else to park their vehicle.

&uot;If you have a driveway, you’re supposed to park in it,&uot; Calera Police Chief Tommy Palmer said.

The new restrictions will not only apply to residential parking but to public gatherings such as sporting and social events as well.

&uot;Technically, if they’re parked out on the street, they’re in violation,&uot; Palmer said. &uot;But we have to use good judgment in this situation.&uot;

Palmer said penalties for not following the ordinance could range from a parking citation to having the vehicle towed.

&uot;If we receive a complaint or see a vehicle in violation, we will make an attempt to find the owner and have them move it,&uot; Palmer said. &uot;If we can’t find the owner, then we’ll have to take action.&uot;

Bradshaw noted that the ordinance is not concrete and that the city would have the option of changing or updating it in the future.

&uot;If it gets to where it can’t work we can make changes to it,&uot; he said.

In other business, the Calera city council passed a resolution supporting the playing of bingo in Shelby County.

The game currently falls under the county’s anti-gambling laws, but other counties in the state are now allowing bingo.

The Calera Elks lodge had approached the city council during past meetings petitioning to allow the game to be played.

Roy said that the council felt free to pass the resolution because the residents of the city and Shelby County would have to vote on a referendum to legalize bingo before it could go through.

&uot;There would have to be unanimous consent by the public before something like this could be approved,&uot; Roy said. He said that the city would send a request to State Rep. Mike Hill asking him to enter legislation supporting the allowance of bingo in Shelby County