EAST LIVERPOOL - A letter warning residents that the city's parking ordinance will be strictly enforced has been shelved by city council's streets committee after one member questioned its validity.
Committee Chairman Scott Barrett had signed the letter prepared by Mayor Jim Swoger's office, which contained the ordinance pertaining to parking on sidewalks and a warning that the ordinance would be enforced beginning Oct. 8.
Swoger had offered at a previous streets committee meeting to hand-deliver a letter to residents of the Harvey Avenue area who committee member Ray Perorazio complained are parking on the sidewalk, making it necessary for pedestrians to walk in the street.
At that same meeting, members had discussed whether residents in some areas - such as Lisbon Street - should be allowed to park on the sidewalk due to their vehicles being hit by passing traffic.
The parking ordinance does seem to provide for that exemption, stating, "No person shall park a vehicle, except when necessary to avoid conflict with other traffic on a sidewalk, curb or street lawn area."
Barrett said that, rather than amend the ordinance as had been discussed earlier, it would be allowed to stand, but the letter with that clause and the warning would be distributed.
The letter also advised those who wanted to discuss the issue to attend next week's council meeting.
"We're not changing the ordinance, we're just going to enforce it better," Barrett said.
However, Perorazio said the way the letter was written actually gave anyone the right to park on the sidewalk, saying, "You could go to court and argue that you have the right to park on the sidewalk because you're afraid (your vehicle) will get hit by a car."
It was decided to have Law Director Charles Payne investigate the issue farther before taking any action.