Kouts council can't decide on front yard parking

2013-07-16T09:00:00Z 2013-07-16T20:37:07Z Kouts council can't decide on front yard parkingPhil Wieland phil.wieland@nwi.com, (219) 548-4352 nwitimes.com

KOUTS | The Town Council still isn't satisfied with a proposed ordinance to prohibit parking in the front yards of homes or in yards abutting a Kouts street.

Originally introduced at a May meeting and tabled in June for clarification of what vehicles were included in the ban, the ordinance was discussed at Monday's Town Council meeting and tabled again.

The Town Council will discuss it during a study session planned for Aug. 5.

Councilman Kevin Salyer said he is not convinced the town needs the ordinance, which was proposed after residents complained of not being able to sell their houses because a neighbor had several cars parked in the yard rather than the driveway. Officials agreed only a handful of homes would be affected by the ordinance.

"Some people approached me who would be affected by the ordinance, and they didn't think it would be good," Salyer said. "I haven't had anyone say it would make the town look better."

Clerk-Treasurer Laurie Tribble said one house has several cars in the yard, and the yard is so torn up that water can't drain to the catch basin. She said the intent was not to target people who park an RV or a boat trailer next to their garage.

Police Chief James Boyce said he doesn't get complaints about vehicles parked neatly, such as next to the garage, and, as long as the vehicles are properly plated and driveable, there's nothing the police can do. He said the town has an ordinance allowing trailers up to a certain length to be stored at home, but Salyer said the new ordinance would change that.

The problem would be, if someone is cited for violating the ordinance, they would be able to go around town and point out other vehicles parked in violation that weren't cited, and the ordinance would be unenforceable, Salyer said.

The council also will use the study session to discuss the proposed ordinance requiring anyone whose well goes dry or becomes non-functioning to connect to the town's water system rather than being allowed to drill another well for their home's water supply.

The town doesn't have any way of knowing when people might need to drill a new well now because it doesn't require a permit. Tribble said some people call town hall asking if a permit is needed. Salyer said he has drilled four wells over the years to provide water for his garden and "would never think to call the Town Hall about it."

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