Updated Ordinances for Winter Parking and Weeds in Holly

Updated Ordinances for Winter Parking and Weeds in Holly

(Crystal A. Proxmire, Oct. 14, 2020)

Holly, MI – Holly Village Council voted Tuesday night on ordinance changes regarding winter parking and the height of grass and weeds permitted on properties in the village.

WINTER PARKING

The new winter parking ordinance states that it is improper for vehicles to be parking on the street from 3am to 7am from December 1 through March 30 of each year.  It also allows drivers to park in the area between the sidewalk and the street between the hours of 5pm and 7am during those same dates.  Vehicles may not park in that area during other times and other dates.

Councilperson Richard Kinnamon is the Chair of the Charter and Ordinance Committee.  He presented the ordinance change, explaining that both Police Chief Jerry Narsh and Public Works Director Brian Klaussen requested the change based on their experiences with people being confused about the previous ordinance.

The previous ordinance allowed drivers to park on the street unless there was a snow emergency declared.  Kinnamon said this way “had people park on the streets or not park on the streets based upon weather reports.”  The ordinance specifically was based on the forecast by the National Weather Service Bureau in White Lake or Flint.

This change takes the Village back to a method of enforcement from years past.  The snow emergency parking had been implemented a few years back as a test, Kinnamon said.

In a follow up email with Village Manager Jerry Walker, he clarified the challenges of the short-lived snow emergency ordinance.  “This proved very problematic because people don’t always tune into stations where those are broadcast, or they were out of town or went to bed before broadcast, etc,” he said.  “We heard lots of different reasons why people did not comply.  Because of all the reasons and really the subjective appearance of enforcement the police department was reluctant to issue parking tickets for those in violation.  Because there was not compliance the DPW could not adequately or safely plow snow.  So both the Police Chief and Utilities Director requested the ordinance be amended as proposed.”

In years past the winter parking ordinance ran from November through April.  The ordinance committee considered the general lack of heavy snow in November and April, and instead set the dates at December 1 through the end of March.  The ability to park on the strip between the sidewalk and road is also a new provision.

WEEDS

A simple change to the ordinance regarding grass and weeds is expected to make enforcement easier.  The amendment to Section 92.057 (A) of the Code of Ordinances now states “An owner, agent, or occupant of premises shall maintain at a level less than six (6) inches in any portion of the yard, any noxious weeds, grass or other rank vegetation.  Nor shall there be any accumulation of dead weeds, grass or bush on any lot.”

Kinnamon explained that previously the ordinance required weeds and grass to be no more than six inches “on the average.  “It was open to interpretation so this cleans up the ordinance,” he said.

Discussion also happened around enforcement.  Kinnamon explained that there is a process that gives property owners time to take care of their property before being penalized.  He said the process takes nine days and includes a door hanger to the property owner to notify them.  The process is “an opportunity to rectify the situation before we mow and ticket,” he said.

For more on Village of Holly ordinances, visit their website at http://www.hollyvillage.org/

Residents who live in the Township beyond the Village boundaries are not subject to any snow related ordinances.

 

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