OSWEGO – On a warm, muggy autumn evening, the Oswego Common Council was planning for the cold, snowy days of winter.
At its meeting Tuesday, the council unanimously approved amendments to the Code of the City of Oswego, Chapter 257, Vehicles and Traffic, Section 257-27, Winter Parking Restrictions. The vote was 5-0-2 with councilors Linda DeMassi and John Gosek excused.
The current version of the law, which was passed in 2016, said that you could apply for one on-street space if you had no parking available. The city received around 40 applications, of which 18 were approved.
First Ward Councilor Susan McBrearty was part of the group crafting the tentative changes to the policy.
“Given the limited use, we thought that it would be fair to amend it a little. So if you had no off-street parking you could apply for up to two on-street parking spaces. The fee for the first stays the same ($75); the second one is $150. If you had one off-street parking space and two or more vehicles, you may apply for an on-street parking space, but you’d pay the second space fee,” Councilor Susan McBrearty explained.
If the application isn’t granted, the fee would be returned.
The DPW has the right to make the space(s) available wherever it suited them. But it wasn’t clear that it was possible that it might no be in front of your house, the councilor said.
The current amendments clear up that language, she added.
“We restricted streets less than 28 feet (wide); no parking spaces within 25 feet of a driveway, it’s in the middle, so it’s not like you go from 25 feet of a driveway, it’s 12.5 feet from each driveway. You park in the middle,” she said.
Some streets will lend themselves to having parking spaces right in front of a resident’s house because there are no driveways for a long stretches.
The old version lists “tenants,” “owner-occupied” and “resident.”
The amendments reconcile all of the language to just “owner-occupied.”
“I think it’s a limited extension of the existing program with a lot of latitude for the DPW to make sure that they are fixing the spots where it most suits them for snow removal and clear for emergency vehicles,” she said.
In the past, free overnight parking is available in the following municipal lots:
Former Flexo-Wire site – south side of lot/Schuyler Street
Breitbeck Park – parking lot near the bell tower
Wright’s Landing marina
West First Street – parking lot south of the U.S. Post Office
West Cayuga at West First Street – 12 spots on West First Street side of parking lot
Fort Pool parking lot
Burkle Street – parking lot (strip) across from Bishop Commons
Currently, the policy states: “The mayor, at his discretion, may impose a winter parking ban commencing on or after December 1 and continuing through March 31. The mayor may suspend or remove the winter parking ban prior to March 31 at his discretion if winter conditions permit. During such time as the winter parking ban is imposed, the parking of any vehicle on all highways and streets shall be prohibited between the hours of 1 and 6 a.m.”