CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES, CALIFORNIA
TRAFFIC SAFETY COMMISSION
APRIL 24, 2006
CALL TO ORDER: Chair Shepherd called the meeting to order at 7:08 PM at Rancho Palos Verdes Community Room
ROLL CALL: PRESENT: Chair Shepherd, Commissioners Bilezerian, Klein, Mevers, Parfenov, Wright
ABSENT: Commissioner Willens
ALSO PRESENT: Jack Rydell, Traffic Engineer, Wildan; Ron Dragoo, Senior Engineer, Public Works; Deputy Reece Souza, Sheriff's Department; Frances M. Mooney, Recording Secretary
FLAG SALUTE: Commissioner Bilezerian led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA:
Chair Shepherd suggested that the Commission consider Item 2 regarding Eau Claire Drive Speeding first for the convenience of the one speaker present.
Commissioner Wright moved to exchange Items 1 and 2 of New Business, seconded by Commissioner Mevers.
SHERIFF'S STATUS REPORT:
Deputy Reece Souza distributed copies of a statistical report on traffic incidents and citations. Chair Shepherd asked Deputy Souza to explain the report for the benefit of the new Commissioner, Craig Bilezerian.
Deputy Souza explained that the report compares results for similar months for the years 2003, 2004, and 2005; that it lists total collisions broken down by categories including collisions with injuries and property damage. Also listed are hazardous and non-hazardous citations, describing non-hazardous as tail lights out, improper positioning of a license plate, and other minor violations; that hazardous citations would include anything that could cause an accident such as unsafe turning, speeding, and things of that nature. Deputy Souza pointed out that fatal collisions do not happen often. He explained that the enforcement index is the ratio of citations to injury accidents, and stated that 2005 was the highest he has seen at an average of 59, which indicates a high number of citations but approximately the same number of accidents.
Chair Shepherd explained that the City has hired a Traffic Deputy who has been on duty since December 5, 2005, which has led to the increased citations. Chair Shepherd welcomed Deputy Chris Knox who was present at the meeting.
Chair Shepherd also welcomed the new Commissioner, Craig Bilezerian, and explained that he has an engineering background and works for the City of Torrance in the Public Works Department.
2. EAU CLAIRE DRIVE SPEEDING
1. Install a 25 mph speed limit sign on the west side of Fond du Lac Road south of Basswood Avenue.
2. Place the City radar trailer on Eau Claire Drive per the current deployment schedule.
3. Place the City’s StealthStat radar measurement devices on Eau Claire Drive to obtain 24-hour speed and volume measurements, and provide the resultant data to the Sheriff for their use.
4. Request additional speed enforcement from the Lomita Sheriff Station.
5. Provide assistance to neighborhood leadership if they wish to implement a lawn sign program.
Traffic Engineer’s Report
Traffic Engineer Rydell reported that Staff investigated and evaluated the location at the request of Carol Hill who was concerned about speeding on that roadway. He explained that as part of their investigation staff found that this is a residential roadway near Palos Verdes Peninsula High School; that Eau Claire Drive becomes Fond du Lac Road from Pembina Road easterly. Traffic Engineer Rydell reported that as a major part of the investigation staff took radar speed surveys and determined that traffic is traveling fairly fast based on the following results.
85th % % > Max
34 mph 74% 40 mph 25-34 mph
Traffic Engineer Rydell pointed out that the prevailing speed of 34 mph is higher than desired on a local residential roadway; that almost three-quarters of drivers are exceeding the speed limit, and he reported speeds of 40 mph and possibly higher at other times of the day.
Traffic Engineer Rydell reported that Staff implemented their typical initial actions for speeding complaints in the City, first identifying whether additional signage, striping, or marking was required. Staff discovered that 25 mph speed limit signs do exist on Eau Claire from the south, but there were no signs on the north end where Eau Claire turns into Fond du Lac Road heading south. As a result, Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that Staff is recommending installing a 25 mph speed limit sign on the west side of Fond du Lac Road south of Basswood Avenue. He reported that Eau Claire is currently part of the scheduled radar trailer deployment; Staff will assign the StealthStat devices, which will provide daily volumes and speeds, and will share this information with the Sheriff’s Department for enforcement purposes. Staff will also be available to provide neighborhood leadership with lawn signs, which are doing very well in the Toscanini neighborhood.
Traffic Engineer Rydell reported that these initial steps are consistent with the existing Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program (NTCP), and that Staff brought this issue before the Commission to provide an opportunity for the residents on that street to voice their opinions.
Commissioner Bilezerian asked if the purpose of the 24-hour speed counts is to determine the time when the vehicles are exceeding the speed limit—not to consider changing to the speed limit under the 85th percentile.
Traffic Engineer Rydell concurred and responded that their goal is get the hour-by-hour volume and speed counts to share with the Sheriff’s Department to help them maximize the effectiveness of enforcement.
Chair Shepherd opened the Public Hearing.
Andrew Munro, 5402 Eau Claire Drive, stated that his residence is at the intersection of Eau Claire and Pembina Road, which he stated is probably one of the most dangerous areas in terms of a steeper slope coming around a corner. Mr. Munro stated that when he leaves his house with his one-year-old and four-year-old children in the back seat he prays that someone will not come barreling over, saying that they do quite often at all times of the day and sometimes in the middle of the night. Mr. Munro stated that everything Staff is saying sounds fine, but that the reality is that it will not prevent the behavior, and the only thing that will prevent the behavior is speed bumps. He emphasized that it is a seriously dangerous situation, and stated that the City is on notice of it now. Mr. Munro suggested that, if the Commission does not take those actions now, they at least schedule this on the agenda for further discussion because it has become a thoroughfare. Mr. Munro stated that if the City puts up signs, the people who respond to signs are generally those who are going slightly over the limit. He stated that the problem is the kids who come flying over the hill because they are late for practice or late for class, and putting up a sign on the lawn will not stop that. He suggested that one of these mornings he may be pulling out (of his driveway) and they cannot see him and he cannot see them, and they are traveling at high speeds.
Chair Shepherd closed the Public Hearing.
Commissioner Wright referred to Mr. Munro’s comment that this is happening at all times of day and night and asked if this occurs predominantly at a particular time of day. Commissioner Wright commented that Mr. Munro mentioned schools, and asked if it is happening at the start and end times of the school day.
Mr. Munro responded yes, but it is not only that. He stated that over the weekend when school was not in session, he was gardening and an SUV came flying over the hill; that people treat that street as if it is a major street or thoroughfare. He reiterated that nothing would stop this type of driver except to force them to slow down with speed bumps.
Chair Shepherd asked if there is an accident history.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that there was one reported accident.
Chair Shepherd explained that the Commission is trying to follow the usual steps in phase one, as outlined in the Neighborhood Traffic Calming Program, to first identify that there is a problem, and, if so, implement an education and enforcement phase.
Commissioner Klein reported that he drove the street this afternoon and recognized a factor that might contribute to the speeding. He asked if Staff could do something to the street to make it appear narrower at relatively low cost to the City such as painting an island down the middle to take away six or eight feet as Staff thinks is appropriate. He suggested that this might make vehicles slow down.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that this is one of the tools and techniques used to narrow roadways, but Staff typically reserves these measures until after education and enforcement fail to resolve the problem because it does have a cost.
Commissioner Wright asked if the street had been surveyed to enable Staff to shoot radar for enforcement.
Traffic Engineer Rydell responded that it is a residential street, so it did not have to be surveyed.
Commissioner Parfenov stated that this is almost a blind curve. He suggested that some people use it as a short-cut, turning left from Hawthorne onto Shorewood Road and right on Eau Claire Drive to go to the High School.
Commissioner Klein moved that the Commission adopt Staff recommendations 1 through 5 on circle page 30 as presented, to address the Eau Claire Drive speeding situation, seconded by Commissioner Parfenov.
1. ON-STREET PARKING OF RV/OVERSIZED VEHICLES
1. Consider approval of one of the following on-street parking scenarios for submittal to the City Council:
a. Prohibit all oversized vehicles from parking on streets within the City except for periods of up to two (2) hours adjacent to the registered owners residence for the purpose of and while actually engaged in loading, unloading, cleaning, battery charging or other activities associated with travel per the draft ordinance contained in Attachment A.
b. Prohibit all oversized vehicles from parking on streets within the City between the hours of 2:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m., allowing oversized vehicles to be parked during other times adjacent to the registered owners residence per the draft ordinance contained in Attachment B.
c. Prohibit parking of oversized vehicles on streets within the City except upon issuance of a permit by the City that restricts parking to 72 hours maximum adjacent to the registered owners residence, with a maximum of four (4) permits issued to a single owner during any calendar year per the draft ordinance contained in Attachment C.
d. Prohibit parking of oversized vehicles on streets within the City except upon issuance of a permit by the City that restricts parking to 72 hours maximum adjacent to the registered owners residence per the draft ordinance contained in Attachment D.
e. Continue to use existing mechanisms.
Traffic Engineer’s Report
Traffic Engineer Rydell briefly reviewed the Staff report, commenting that the Commission is familiar with this issue, that the public is fully aware of it, and that it is on the Internet. He pointed out that Staff has provided five different alternatives for the Commission’s consideration; four of the alternatives are selective prohibitions for oversized vehicles, and one of them is to utilize existing mechanisms, which include:
(1) The 72-hour rule;
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that the Staff position at this point is to allow the public to voice their opinion and the Commission to discuss it.
Chair Shepherd expressed agreement and commented that this is the third time this item has been on the agenda, although one meeting was cancelled for lack of a quorum. She explained that the first time it was scheduled, the Commission had a very thorough presentation from Staff and a discussion by the Commissioners. Chair Shepherd suggested that the Commission proceed by listening to comments from the public and there were no objections.
Chair Shepherd opened the Public Hearing.
George Zugsmith, 3746 Hightide Drive, explained that he read the newspaper article and studied the available information, and it seems to him that only one of the Ordinance options will work. On the ones that he believes will not work, Mr. Zugsmith explained that prohibiting oversized vehicles between 2:00 am and 5:00 am (Option b.) shifts to an enforcement problem for the Sheriff, and commented that the Lomita Station does not need calls between 2:00 am and 5:00 am when they need their units for other reasons. He suggested that it is not the best of the possible choices. On Option (d), the 72-hour limit requires that the vehicle be moved at least 528 feet; Mr. Zugsmith described this as the “doctrine of unintended consequences”, since the neighbor ends up with the vehicle in front of their house. On Option (e), which would continue to use existing mechanisms, Mr. Zugsmith suggested that there are no existing mechanisms except the Vehicle Code section, which states that you cannot leave it parked for more than 72 hours, but one incremental movement of about one millimeter or less would satisfy the Vehicle Code. He speculated that if the tire is chalked, then moving it far enough to roll over the chalked tire is sufficient to comply with the Vehicle Code, so he suggested that that does not make any sense. Mr. Zugsmith stated that what he does not understand is Option (a), which prohibits all oversized vehicles, which to him tastes the cleanest of all. He stated that what he does not understand is when Staff says that the selected cities that have an Ordinance like this are Orange, Newport Beach, Lake Forest, and Mission Viejo. Mr. Zugsmith stated that he does not understand why Staff has to reach all the way down there; what about Rolling Hills, Rolling Hills Estates, and, Palos Verdes Estates—none of those cities allow this. He stated that he does not know why Rancho Palos Verdes must become a slum for the hill. He described the issue as a political football, and suggested that if people have big vehicles they have some attendant responsibilities to put them somewhere, and that does not mean on the neighborhood streets. Mr. Zugsmith questioned what happens when a resident has a visitor from out of State, and suggested a permit process for short periods. Mr. Zugsmith concluded that Option (a) is the cleanest and is the one that works, and he does not understand why the City must reinvent the wheel.
Traffic Engineer Rydell clarified for the audience that all four of the alternatives provided have a requirement that the RV or oversized vehicle must be parked adjacent to the registered owner’s house—they cannot move it down the street in front of someone else’s house.
Chair Shepherd asked about the 528 feet; that it is quite a distance and might not be in front of the resident’s house.
Traffic Engineer Rydell reiterated that the vehicle must be parked in front of their house.
Jim Gordon, 3538 Bendigo Drive in a cul-de-sac, explained that he does not have an RV and there is no RV problem in his area, but he occasionally brings an old wooden boat down from Northern California and parks it in front of his house and it usually is connected to a suburban. He questioned whether it is an oversized vehicle according to the definitions presented. He explained that if he leaves it as a trailer just by itself, is it an oversized vehicle.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that trailers are included in the Ordinances, and it is suggested that whenever an Ordinance is pursued it should include non-motorized vehicles not attached to motorized vehicles in the restrictions, and includes trailers, camper shells, etc.
Mr. Gordon interpreted that this issue does not affect him.
Tom Redfield, 31273 Ganado Drive, stated that it seems clear, based on the feedback received by the Coalition and Mediterranea Homeowner’s Association, that the problem has come to a head and it is necessary to move ahead. He explained that he is not completely happy with the options presented for a couple of reasons; (1) he does not think, when they have people like Ernie Giannioses who represents the RV owners, that they want to be too restrictive. Mr. Redfield stated that he is not sure they need 72 hours, and suggested that a committee meet with Ernie and some of the RV people and try to work out something more reasonable. Mr. Redfield stated that he believes 72 hours is too long; that they may be talking about other vehicles such as work trucks, boats, and other vehicles, and they do not want to restrict people like Mr. Gordon from bringing his boat home for a reasonable amount of time. Mr. Redfield stated that all these problems arise because of one or two individuals who abuse everything; so many punitive things are added. He explained that his idea would be that they should not have oversized vehicles parked on the street overnight, maybe with the exception of RVs; that maybe a permit is the only way to do it. Mr. Redfield stated that he does not know the number of RVs in Rancho Palos Verdes, or whether it might be too much to handle; but he suggested finding a way to work with the RV owners to have a day or two, and allow for visitors. He stated that the bottom line is that he does not believe that the Commission has identified one Ordinance that would be completely acceptable to most people. Mr. Redfield encouraged the Commission to take this a little further with a committee. He complimented the Commission for reaching a starting point.
Ernie Giannioses, 5344 Manitowac Drive, explained that he is the Legislative Representative for the Good Sam organization, Family Motor Coach Association, and the RPV Parking Rights Coalition. Mr. Giannioses stated that he agrees with Mr. Redfield that this is a very emotional situation for many people, and that the Commission may or may not be aware that there are hundreds of RVs in Rancho Palos Verdes. He explained that he was involved with the private property situation that took place in 2003/2004. He stated that the City Council invited him to sit in with Director Rojas of the Planning Department and others who wrote the CC&Rs for the off-street parking issue. Mr. Giannioses offered to be involved with any of the Commissioners or Staff as a representative of the residents to develop a reasonable solution for everyone. He suggested that much of the problem stems from the fact that the 72-hour rule is very hard to enforce, people take advantage of it, and people do not talk to their neighbors. He stated that it is not just RVs—it is cars, boats, everything—and junk cars parked in the street irritate people just as much as RVs. He stated that whatever the City puts in place must be enforceable or they might as well stay with what they have. He again offered to work with Staff or the Commission at any time or place. Mr. Giannioses stated that some of the four Ordinance options presented might work with a little modification, but he does not believe any one of them will work as is.
Commissioner Klein asked which of the four Ordinance options is most appealing and what would make it more appealing.
Mr. Giannioses responded that someone mentioned the original Ordinance with the 72-hour parking was a possibility with some changes, and he does not know what those might be, but that it might be a possibility. He explained that the other one that might work, and would get the vehicles off the street, would be Option (b); but he does not believe it should pertain only to oversized vehicles because this does not help people with the cars or other junk items. He would like to see an occasional permit for 72-hour parking added, even though signs are posted restricting parking from 2:00 am to 5:00 am. He suggested that cleaning and loading/unloading the RV could not be completed in one day, and questioned where a resident would put the vehicle until the next day when they can work on it again. Mr. Giannioses stated that no matter which Ordinance option is chosen, if it will end up eliminating on-street parking, they have to find a way to grandfather things for possibly a year to give people an opportunity to find a place to park their vehicles. He explained that there is nothing available within a 10- to 15-mile area to park an RV, and if you find one, the fee is a minimum of $150 a month, and this will put a hardship on many people. Mr. Giannioses presumed that as the issue progresses toward the City Council, there would be some very emotional people here regarding the situation.
Chair Shepherd asked if Mr. Giannioses is familiar with what the City of Los Angeles has proposed.
Mr. Giannioses responded, just minimally, because he has not heard much about it.
Chair Shepherd explained that theirs is very similar to Option (b) with a prohibition between 2:00 am and 6:00 am, and a permit process for several times during the year for washing, loading, unloading, repairs, charging, and whatever needs to be done.
Mr. Giannioses referred to Option (a) “periods for up to two hours” and asked what can anyone do in two hours—that it takes ten or twelve hours to charge a battery and washing a motor home takes more than two hours. Regarding the Los Angeles Ordinance, he stated that it is in line with his opinion and will get them off the street; that it may be too restrictive, and if it is too restrictive there will be a terrible enforcement problem because people will ignore it.
Diana Feinberg, 28148 Ridgecove Court South, Rancho Palos Verdes, explained that she lives in the Ridgegate East complex and that she is speaking as an individual and not on behalf of the homeowner’s association; that her unit directly overlooks Ridgegate Drive where she has seen many oversized vehicles parked. Ms. Feinberg believes that Rancho Palos Verdes, since she arrived in 1984, has come a long way from being the poor cousin of the Peninsula and is now being an equally recognized peer with the other three cities on the hill and she would like to keep it that way. Ms. Feinberg stated that whatever is enacted should harmonize with the parking regulations of the other cities on the Peninsula. She does not want to see Rancho Palos Verdes become a dumping ground for vehicles from other cities. On Ridgegate Drive, she has noticed some oversized vehicles that she knows are not registered to people who live anywhere close. She explained, for example, an electrician parked his truck there every night for close to a year; the owner of the company lives in Palos Verdes Estates and the electrician lives in Lomita, and their panel truck with supplies was parked on Ridgegate Drive day after day and night after night. She does not want to see that repeated with other vehicles if Rancho Palos Verdes is the only municipality around that will allow on-street parking overnight. She lives in a fog belt and must slow to 5 mph to drive an RV through a thick fog, and it is very disconcerting. She stated that Ridgegate Drive has two characteristics that make it ideal for parking large vehicles; her two-block stretch of road is almost perfectly flat and straight, which makes it perfect for speeding. She stated that some large boats have also been parked there, and what concerns her about these large vehicles is that their left tires extend over the solid white line, which delineates a bike lane or something similar. When it is very foggy and drivers are traveling very slowly, it can be very disconcerting. She explained that residents have difficulty exiting from their cul-de-sac streets onto Ridgegate Drive given the speeding situation, which continues despite the stop signs. She stated that on March 16 she was nearly broad sided by a 40-year old male driver who went through the stop sign at Ridgecove and Ridgegate Drive, and she does not want to see more accidents occur on their streets. In summary, Ms. Feinberg suggested harmonizing the City’s parking regulations with those of neighboring cities so that Rancho Palos Verdes does not become a dumping ground for them. If she chose one of the proposed Ordinances it would be Option (b), modified to state “parking be prohibited between 5:00 pm and 5:00 am” so that parking is available only in daytime hours when visibility is at its highest and not at night when visibility is at its lowest, especially when the fog starts to come in around 5:00 pm. She suggested that possibly the City could prohibit oversized vehicles on streets in the fog belt, and perhaps in the Eastview area it will not be a problem, and they do not seem to be fogged in there.
Late Correspondence received from Robert Lauck, 4122 Dauntless Drive, Rancho Palos Verdes.
Senior Engineer Dragoo presented a letter from Robert Lauck.
Chair Shepherd questioned whether the Commission should consider the letter since the Commissioners did not receive it in the agenda packet and have not had time to review it. She also suggested developing a policy regarding late correspondence similar to other City Commissions. Until that time, Chair Shepherd directed Senior Engineer Dragoo to proceed with his review.
Senior Engineer Dragoo explained that the resident’s concern is that he rents an RV occasionally and there is a certain pick-up time which allows him enough time to load; that when he unloads it is bedtime, so he needs the time during the evening to park in front of his house until it can be returned.
Chair Shepherd confirmed that this is addressed in one or more of the Ordinance options with permitting for loading and unloading.
Chair Shepherd closed the Public Hearing.
Chair Shepherd distributed copies of a news release from Councilwoman Janice Hahn of the City of Los Angeles regarding an Ordinance to eliminate storage of recreational vehicles on city streets that would prohibit parking from 2:00 am to 6:00 am. Chair Shepherd pointed out that at the Los Angeles Council meeting on March 22, 2006 the Council passed a Motion (14-0 unofficial) with instructions to send the issue to the City Attorney to prepare a draft Ordinance.
Commissioner Mevers asked if it is known how many oversized vehicles are parking on the streets of Rancho Palos Verdes on a regular basis.
Mr. Giannioses reported that from a survey taken about three years ago there were over 300 RVs.
Commissioner Mevers reported that during his morning walk in a two-mile area, he saw about eight RVs that were all parked in driveways, which would be the Planning Commission’s problem. As a result, he questioned whether there is really a problem with people parking in the street.
Senior Engineer Dragoo stated that prior to Wednesday (April 19, 2006) he received two calls regarding RVs, and since Wednesday when Staff published the agenda he received four phone calls regarding RV and oversized vehicle parking with concerns that residents would not be allowed to load their vehicles in front of houses. The two complaints that he received before April 19 were from residents who were uncomfortable driving around these “big boxes”, but there were no safety concerns regarding how they were parked. Senior Engineer Dragoo stated that he does not perceive RV parking to be a safety concern.
Chair Shepherd asked if the Sheriff’s Department has received complaints.
Deputy Souza responded that they get more calls for parked cars than for RVs, and the RV calls are from neighbors complaining that an RV is only being moved back and forth a few inches.
Commissioner Wright repeated his question from a previous meeting about whether an inordinate number of injury or non-injury accidents where the source of the accident was a motor home, such as lack of visibility when backing out of a driveway.
Deputy Souza responded that there are none at this time, and if there were, it was not enough to stand out—that he only recalls one approximately three years ago involving a driveway incident.
Commissioner Mevers questioned how the Commission could propose a ruling to take care of a few problems without penalizing many people.
Chair Shepherd referred to comments by Commissioner Willens at a previous meeting when he suggested that the reason complaints are not received may be because there is no prohibition except the 72-hour rule, and many frustrated residents give up because there is nothing to protect them once they call. She explained that the RV is moved a few inches and, when the resident discovers who called, their life is miserable forever because of that phone call. Chair Shepherd explained that Commissioner Willens felt that, if there was something in place to protect the caller in an Ordinance, it might help.
Commissioner Wright stated that people could call anonymously, and confirmed with Deputy Souza that the Sheriff’s Department does follow up on these calls when they have the manpower.
Deputy Souza responded that Deputies do not try to create a problem by informing the resident that the neighbor called the Sheriff.
Commissioner Bilezerian asked if, when the Planning Commission changed its criteria for allowing or prohibiting parking on private property, they forced residents to now park on the street, even though the Planning Commission’s concern at the time was real—or are those conditions the same.
Senior Engineer Dragoo responded that it is his understanding that it has changed some, but he is unclear if it is Code, or if, when it went to the former Traffic Committee, they directed the Committee to look at this issue so the Planning Commission could address both issues simultaneously. He explained that the Planning Commission has prepared a recommendation regarding RVs and oversized vehicles.
Chair Shepherd reported that the vehicle must be on a pad on the property, and she believes it is now Code.
Commissioner Bilezerian asked if that has forced more vehicles to park on the street.
Commissioner Mevers responded that it did because residents cannot park on the lawns.
Chair Shepherd explained that, with the restriction, if residents do not have the proper space they must either store the vehicle or park it on the street.
Commissioner Bilezerian commented on the two complaints received in a two-year period, and asked when the Planning Commission changed the ruling.
Senior Engineer Dragoo responded that it was approximately two years ago.
Commissioner Bilezerian commented that one complaint a year does not seem to be enough to warrant the impact on a significant number of people to pay $150 a month rent.
Senior Engineer Dragoo explained that the Commission and Staff are now looking at Ordinance options for a recommendation to present to the City Council so they can act on it.
Chair Shepherd explained to Commissioner Bilezerian that in October 2003 the Planning Commission requested that the former Traffic Committee review this issue.
Traffic Engineer Rydell confirmed this and stated that City Council re-instructed the Traffic Safety Commission at the last Joint Workshop on September 10, 2005 to develop alternatives.
Commissioner Bilezerian referred to circle page 5, paragraph five of the Staff report regarding the Council’s request for recommendations, and asked if that request is for a singular recommendation or can it be plural and include a combination of items.
Chair Shepherd responded that it could be the preferred Ordinance option including the majority and minority opinions, or it could be stated as alternatives.
Commissioner Bilezerian referred to the provision allowing charging of batteries on a public street, which means there is an electrical cord going over the sidewalk—a public right-of-way—and potential filling of tanks going over the public right-of-way. He suggested that the City Attorney might want to look at these issues.
Senior Engineer Dragoo commented that this probably falls into the category of things that people do as opposed to what is allowed.
Commissioner Bilezerian referred to condominiums and apartments where parking is not allowed in front of the property, and asked what the residents do.
Chair Shepherd responded that they must find a storage facility.
Traffic Engineer Rydell emphasized that Staff thought it was very important that each of the Ordinance options require residents to park the RV in front of the registered owners residence.
Chair Shepherd asked if she is correct that the sister cities have a complete restriction.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that he believes that Rolling Hills does not allow overnight parking of any vehicle.
Deputy Souza stated that Rolling Hills is not addressing the issue as a safety or hazard issue, but just for aesthetics.
Chair Shepherd explained that Los Angeles is addressing everything, including safety, aesthetics, and inaccessibility to streets. She suggested that information regarding the regulations of their sister cities be included.
Deputy Souza explained that Rolling Hills Estates has no parking of any vehicles between 3:00 am and 5:00 am; that if residents need to park on the street overnight they call the Sheriff’s Station and the information is logged at the desk so they do not get cited, and it is not a problem.
Chair Shepherd asked about Rolling Hills behind the gates.
Deputy Souza responded that most of the time they cannot park on the side of the streets because it is a hazard involving blocking a horse trail or something of that nature. He did not have any information regarding Palos Verdes Estates.
Senior Engineer Dragoo stated that information regarding the Peninsula cities was originally included in the report, but it was removed because the Commission asked for references pertaining specifically to the sample Ordinances presented. He went to his office to retrieve the information on the Peninsula cities.
Commissioner Parfenov commented that all four Ordinance options contain exemptions regarding vehicles such as construction, installation and repair, maintenance, and pick-ups and deliveries—vehicles that provide a service and then leave, and asked if that is correct.
Senior Engineer Dragoo confirmed that this is correct.
RECESS AND RECONVENE:
The Commission recessed at 8:15 pm and reconvened at 8:27 pm.
Commission Discussion (continued)
Traffic Engineer Rydell reported the following information regarding the sister cities:
Palos Verdes Estates says no part of a unit may extend past the property line, may not park anywhere but on the property, and that is for campers, motor homes, trailers, and recreational vehicles. He explained that all other vehicles are allowed to park on the street with no overnight restriction;
Rolling Hills is very restrictive, with a provision that no RV may park within 50’ of the roadway easement;
Rolling Hills Estates says that no vehicle may park on any street overnight between 3:00 am and 5:00 am.
Commissioner Klein moved that the Commission adopt Recommendation (d) on circle page 4 that would prohibit parking of oversized vehicles on streets within the City, except upon issuance of a permit by the City that restricts parking to 72 hours maximum adjacent to the registered owner’s residence per the draft Ordinance contained in Attachment D of the Staff report, seconded by Commissioner Mevers.
Commissioner Wright stated that he still has some of the same issues as when the Commission discussed this subject two months ago. He believes that the Commission’s most important task is to determine if something is a traffic or safety issue, and so far he has heard from Staff that there is no accident history, no appreciable complaint history, and it seems to be an aesthetics issue. He stated that he understands that completely, and might be the first in line to approach the Planning Commission on that basis. Commissioner Wright referred to recommendation (e), which is to continue to use existing mechanisms. He commented that, within the sections that are applicable to enforce parking regulations on the street, it restricts parking within 100’ of an intersection, provides the 72-hour tow, and gives the City authority to restrict parking where it is unsafe. He stated that, with this Ordinance option, the City would have the ability to regulate a vehicle parked in an unsafe manner or in an area where it might cause a traffic safety hazard. He stated that he has no argument with people concerned with aesthetics, but is not certain that aesthetics is the task of this body. Commissioner Wright acknowledged that the Council directed the Commission to look at all aspects, and not just traffic safety; but the Planning Commission makes decisions on the other issues, and maybe that is where this issue should be considered, or a combination of the Traffic Safety and Planning Commissions.
Chair Shepherd reported that it came from the Planning Commission.
Commissioner Klein commented on his Motion, explaining that he thought there should be a Motion on the floor to legitimize the discussion, and suggested that it could be amended.
Commissioner Bilezerian commented on Ordinance option (d) and the requirement for “Two site visits, at least 72 hours apart . . .” (circle page 10). He asked what the City currently does to start the 72-hour time clock; and if the appropriate measures are in place, does it cost the City more money to have a Deputy come back to check on one or more locations to stop the clock at 72 hours and issue a citation.
Deputy Souza explained that they respond to complaints by chalking and red tagging the tire, keeping half of the red tag, which is on file. After 72 hours, the Deputy either receives another complaint or returns to the location to verify that it has not been moved, and then the vehicle is towed. Deputy Souza explained that the main purpose of the red-tag procedure is to eventually remove abandoned vehicles. He explained that if there is a car or motor home parked where it causes a hazard, the Sheriff’s Department does not have to wait 72 hours—they can just tow it immediately, and this would be part of the regular routine while patrolling the City.
Commissioner Bilezerian referred to the cost and increased demand on Staff to process permits, and asked if estimates were available regarding the number of hours per week, month, or year this would take.
Senior Engineer Dragoo explained that an encroachment permit takes from 15 minutes to 40 minutes depending on how complicated it is. He stated that if Staff assumed that 300 vehicles were used once a year, the RV permit process would be more straightforward and would probably not take as long. He assumed that the permit process used would probably be developed and refined.
Traffic Engineer Rydell enhanced on that, saying that one of the caveats of the permit is that Staff would perform an engineering analysis of the location regarding safety, and if inappropriate for an RV, even though it is at the residence, they would not allow a permit.
Commissioner Mevers questioned whether the City could charge a fee to include time spent on processing permits.
Traffic Engineer Rydell responded that the City would charge a fee that would reimburse for time processing costs.
Chair Shepherd asked if there is an average or a standard fee, such as between $30 and $100 or $100-$200; and what do other cities charge for this type of permit.
Traffic Engineer Rydell responded that he does not know, but will research this.
Senior Engineer Dragoo reported that the only one he is certain of is Coronado, and they charge an $8.00 fee, and that City is not similar to Rancho Palos Verdes.
Commissioner Klein commented that the City Council and their Staff would resolve many of the details.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that when looking at Ordinances of other cities they typically stated in their Ordinances that the City Manager would establish the fee.
Commissioner Parfenov commented that Staff would handle each permit on a case-by-case basis.
Traffic Engineer Rydell concurred, saying that the rationale behind that was that some locations are inappropriate.
Commissioner Parfenov reminded the Commission of the list of oversized vehicles he presented at the February 2006 Commission meeting that included vehicles not categorized as RVs, such as Hummers.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that all the Ordinances (a through d) provide Staff’s definition of an oversized vehicle in terms of length, height, and width.
Chair Shepherd distributed a spreadsheet showing dimensions of SUV-type and other potentially oversized vehicles similar to those referred to by Commissioner Parfenov at the February meeting. She explained that she obtained the information from the PowerPoint presentation sent to her from the City of La Palma, and that it was used in processing their Ordinance for oversized vehicles. Chair Shepherd explained that this is old data and some of the vehicles may not be current, but the width, height, and length on the list is what La Palma used to determine if a vehicle was oversized. She explained that the highlighted vehicles exceed the limitations of the width, length, or height. The list contained the models and showed which were outside the range of the definition.
Commissioner Wright clarified that under the current 72-hour rule, if a vehicle were not moved, a Deputy would mark the tires; if it were not moved after being marked it would be towed, and asked if that is correct.
Deputy Souza responded that is correct.
Commissioner Wright commented that he noticed under provisions (a) through (d) that a citation is issued, negating towing the vehicle, and asked if that is correct.
Traffic Engineer Rydell responded that the 72-hour violation of a permit allows the City to tow, and the resident will not get a permit the next time one is requested.
Deputy Souza commented that they would not cite and tow—that it would be one or the other. He explained that the vehicle would already be red-tagged; that the violation would not have occurred if the rule were written as proposed or as it is currently written, so the current rule is still good. In the case described, the Deputy would probably tow because that is what they do on a 72-hour red-tag violation.
Commissioner Wright asked how the Deputy determines which one will be done—tow or cite.
Chair Shepherd commented that it would have to be written in the Ordinance.
Senior Engineer Dragoo gave an example that if the Deputy chose to cite, he would return in 72 hours and tow if necessary.
Commissioner Wright clarified that they are now talking six days grace before towing—72 hours before giving a citation, and waiting another 72 hours to tow.
Senior Engineer Dragoo responded that this would be true if that was how the Ordinance was written.
Commissioner Wright suggested that, to use that as an example, it is now potentially an abandoned vehicle for six days instead of three if it were written that way.
Deputy Souza asked, what if the resident said no—that it has been 72 hours and they want it towed—and suggested that the vehicle would probably be towed.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that another way to interpret it would be that the resident gets cited after their 72-hour permit expires, and if the City wants to give them one more day, knowing it is already red-tagged and that 72 hours does apply, give them a day of grace and then tow.
Commissioner Klein referred to the first paragraph on circle page 10 under Ordinance Option D of the Staff report and read “ . . . that the permit would be valid for a period of six months and would need to be clearly displayed specifying the duration of the permit.” He stated that he assumes that the permit is on the dashboard or some place where it is visible.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that the other cities using the permit process require residents to display the permit in the front window, clearly visible, so that the Sheriff can see it.
Commissioner Klein asked, what if the vehicle is parked without a permit, but for 72 hours or less, and asked if the City still has the authority to cite or tow.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that these proposed Ordinances require that the resident have a permit to park an RV on the streets.
Commissioner Klein questioned that if they do not have a permit, the City does not have to wait 72 hours, but could cite or tow them immediately.
Deputy Souza stated that a citation would be issued if the Code were written that way, and the 72 hour would not apply if they are parking where a permit is required such as on Fond du Lac.
Commissioner Klein suggested that the citation would be written for failure to obey a sign.
Traffic Engineer Rydell agreed, quoting from Attachment D (Ordinance Option D), paragraph G. under “Penalty for Violation” on circle page 26 that “Vehicles parked in violation of this chapter may be cited immediately and fined $75 for each violation.” He explained that if a resident does not display a permit, they would start accumulating citations after three days.
Commissioner Klein questioned a situation where a resident has a handicapped permit.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that all the proposed Ordinances address that issue, and every city that he reviewed addressed that with no exceptions. He pointed out the provision on circle page 25, Attachment D (Ordinance Option D) in Paragraph 5. “Oversized vehicles registered with the state department of motor vehicles to a disabled person . . .”
Commissioner Klein suggested that a disabled person could park without a City permit, but not for more than 72 hours.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that they could, but he does not believe that they would be exempt from other California Vehicle Code (CVC) regulations or the County regulations, but it does not require them to have the RV parking permit.
Commissioner Klein explained that his understanding of the handicapped exemptions is the time limit—that they can park for as long as they want—and asked if that is incorrect.
Deputy Souza stated that there are a few parking exceptions such as parking meters, and he does not recall seeing any provision that exempts them from the 72-hour rule.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that disabled persons are exempt from certain time-limit parking issues, and they are very specific in the CVC.
Commissioner Bilezerian asked if it is appropriate, if the Commission chooses one or more Ordinance options, to ask that the chosen Ordinance be modified to please the Commission and then come back before this Commission to choose a selected Ordinance and a second Ordinance option to recommend to the City Council, or is the Commission determined to approve something tonight.
Chair Shepherd said that it could be a Motion; that if the Commission cannot reach a decision they can amend the Motion or see if this Motion fails and go on to the next one. She explained that anything is an option at this point.
Commissioner Parfenov commented that when looking at alternatives, referring to Alternative 2 on circle page 12 of the Staff report “Limit the ordinance selected to residential streets only” he understands it to mean prohibiting parking of oversized vehicles in a residential area, and instead allow people to park on collector and arterial roadways such as Hawthorne Boulevard.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that some other agencies that he reviewed limited their Ordinances to only residential neighborhoods, and he wanted to make the Commission aware that this is possible.
Commissioner Mevers asked how RV owners are notified if the Commission adopts a procedure.
Traffic Engineer Rydell responded, referring for example to circle page 17 Section B, under “Prohibition”, that signs must be posted to properly notify people; and he believes that this provision is included in all of the proposed Ordinances.
Commissioner Klein suggested that the Commission could require in the recommendation, or when it gets to the City Council, that organizations such as Good Sam’s Club and other community groups be notified.
Commissioner Wright suggested that it might be appropriate, because if there is a traffic safety issue and an aesthetics issue, it might be prudent to have a group of people from both Commissions meet with representatives from the community to discuss it from both points of view to reach a mutual solution that would please most people.
Chair Shepherd asked if there is a provision in any of the draft ordinances specifying the grace period that RV owners would have to adhere to any of these restrictions.
Traffic Engineer Rydell said no, except that signs must be posted.
Chair Shepherd suggested that the Commission could address this as they work on drafts and make recommendations, and a window, such as six months or one year, could be included.
Commissioner Bilezerian suggested that, if the Commission considers modifying the Motion and Ordinance option (d) is selected, the Commission include the alternative to the City Council to also consider Ordinance option (e) as a recommendation. He explained that, (1) the Commission is not completely clear on the weight of this problem, (2) there is a very small public turnout at this meeting, and (3) Staff indicates there are two complaints since the Planning Commission changed the requirements. Considering these factors, Commissioner Bilezerian stated he thinks it is only fair that the Commission allow the City Council to consider progressive action, as is the approach with traffic calming.
Commissioner Mevers suggested that if the Council does not like what the Traffic Safety Commission proposes they would automatically consider other options.
Commissioner Bilezerian agreed, but suggested that the Commission should take the approach that they considered (e) as an alternative rather than a recommendation.
Commissioner Klein stated that he thinks it is understood that the Commission considered all of the proposed Ordinance options.
Commissioner Wright opined that Commissioner Bilezerian is suggesting that the Council look at Recommendation (e) as well, indicating that the Commission would support either Recommendation (d) or (e).
Chair Shepherd stated that she agrees with Commissioner Mevers that if the Council does not like what the Traffic Safety Commission proposes they would automatically consider other options. She explained that Recommendation (e) is already in existence, and to tell the Council that (e) is one of the Commission’s alternatives when that is a given is like saying that the Commission just gave up and decided to keep things the way they are, so take this.
Commissioner Mevers explained that if the Commission chooses a particular Ordinance option, they might suggest several amendments that could be added to it to allow slight modifications to whatever the Commission thinks is a better way to go.
Commissioner Klein suggested another way by recommending the favorite, and suggesting other Ordinance options as well.
Chair Shepherd asked if it is the intent of the Commission to say to the Council that the Commission has looked at all the Ordinance options and one of them they also liked was doing nothing; and that it appears that this is what they are saying. She explained that she is not comfortable with that as a member of the Commission because the Council always has the option of doing nothing. She commented that this issue has been under review since 2003. Chair Shepherd explained that she is trying to think of a way to utilize Commissioner Bilezerian’s suggestion in a way that says the Commission has given “keeping things the way they are” a good deal of thought, and avoid misinterpretation.
Commissioner Bilezerian agreed. He reiterated that the City only has evidence of two complaints to Staff in two years on which to base enacting something that will increase Staff time and cost. He suggested that if the Commission tells the Council that what the Commission has heard brought them to the decision to use Ordinance option (d), and the Council says that they do not agree with the Commission and therefore we will do Ordinance option (e) or something more stringent; his only suggestion would be that Council should ask the Commission if they considered if there is a problem—if there is a problem, let’s do (d), if there is not a problem, let the method that is now in place stand.
Chair Shepherd stated that, in that case, if the Commission feels that what is in place now is sufficient, they should be able to go forward with that. She stated that the Commission could state that in a recommendation if a majority is sure that it is what they believe.
Commissioner Mevers explained that, after hearing the public comments, he concluded that there might not be much of a safety problem, but he hears aesthetic complaints being made. He also heard that other cities nearby have put harsh restrictions on RV parking on the streets, and if Rancho Palos Verdes does nothing, the City might be providing parking places for residents of other cities. Commissioner Mevers explained that the difficulty he has is how the Commission finds a solution that is not oppressive. He stated that he would support an Ordinance that provides the City some protection from this in the future.
Chair Shepherd stated that even if the Commission makes a decision within the next month, as soon as Torrance and the City of Los Angeles finalize their Ordinances, Rancho Palos Verdes will have overflow parking from other areas, and the Commission should be proactive when they see what is inevitable. She pointed out that this is a problem currently with their three sister cities; then there will be San Pedro, Los Angeles, and Torrance, and even if this City does not have a tremendous problem it will end up with someone else’s’ when people park here overnight because they cannot park in their own city.
Commissioner Mevers asked if he is correct that it will cost $10,000 to post signs.
Senior Engineer Dragoo explained that the discussion was about how many signs would be needed at the entrances to the City on the main roads.
Commissioner Mevers considered the real expenses; (1) permit processing, which could probably be kept at a low level, and (2) the engineering assessment, and he asked if this must be done each time an application is received, or could areas be analyzed in advance.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that Staff must analyze each address where a permit is requested to make certain they do not authorize a permit where safety will be compromised.
Commissioner Mevers asked if Staff could just look at a map in the office to make this decision, citing a personal experience.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that he does not believe so.
Chair Shepherd asked if there are mapping systems from satellite that can actually zoom in on a street and the topography, and if there is any software available for this purpose.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that Staff has aerials that they use all the time, but in this case they would look at grade, alignment, visibility from hedges, width of the road, and many other factors. He stated that he does not feel comfortable from the City’s liability standpoint with not having a professional engineering assessment, just as the Commission would not want him to make recommendations unless he had visited the location.
Commissioner Wright suggested that maps would provide only a one-dimensional view.
Chair Shepherd asked if Staff does the same thing with dumpsters, commenting that they are large enough to fall within the height, width, and length restrictions for an RV.
Senior Engineer Dragoo responded that Staff does not perform an on-site assessment for dumpsters. He explained that the City requires wheels to be blocked, and there are some areas he is aware of where roadways are narrow and he has told the resident that the dumpster must be put on the property rather than the street. He explained that, from that standpoint, there will be streets that Staff could evaluate via map, and he would be comfortable approving of an RV for 72 hours on approximately 2% of the roadways because he is familiar with the street.
Chair Shepherd asked for Senior Engineer Dragoo’s help to understand the difference between the size of an RV and where it is parked and the size of a dumpster. She stated that there is not much difference in the obstruction they both cause, and the City does not have the same restrictions on the dumpster, which will be in place for a month as opposed to 72 hours. She questioned the safety aspect of that; when just talking about size, one is more mobile than the other is, but she does not understand the difference when the City is looking at size, sight distance, and safety. She stated that both vehicles take up the same air space, yet the City does not have a restriction regarding location of a dumpster based upon an analysis of the site, so why would they do that for an RV. Chair Shepherd emphasized that she is not saying Staff should not visit the site, but is asking why it is not done for both RVs and dumpsters.
Senior Engineer Dragoo responded that the provisions are different only because when the procedure was developed for issuing the permit for the dumpster, that was what was considered—evaluate based on what you know. He explained that Staff is taking it a step further with RVs, assuming Staff could make an informed decision if they analyzed the location, so that Staff could address safety issues at the time they issued a permit instead of after a problem arose.
Chair Shepherd stated that it should be apples to apples; if Staff is going a step further for RVs it should also pertain to a dumpster. Chair Shepherd stated that she is making the point of expense, which is the Commission’s fiscal responsibility when making decisions, and they must consider the cost of Staff time. She explained that Staff would now have to visit 98% of the issues because they are only comfortable with 2%, and the cost will be the hourly rate of the Staff person and that is a negative in making a decision. Chair Shepherd emphasized that the Commission must make sure that the expenses are reasonable, that they need to be there; and if it needs to be there for one, it needs to be there for the other. She stated that the question she would ask if she was on the City Council would be “why”, because she has a safety issue with a dumpster just like with an RV.
Senior Engineer Dragoo responded that the Commission can include in the recommendation to the City Council that Staff look at dumpsters and the process that Public Works uses in issuing dumpster permits. He explained however, that he does not believe that will address the RV parking issue that is being considered at this meeting.
Chair Shepherd explained that her intent was just to ask what the procedure is because both vehicles take up the same air space.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that he cannot really speak on behalf of the dumpsters, but on the issue of RVs from the beginning, Staff has stated that they will restrict RV parking in locations determined to be unsafe, such as obstructing traffic flow, hindering traffic safety, or having some type of traffic-related safety issue. He stated that whether dumpsters do not get it, he does not believe that is an appropriate reason for Staff not to make sure that the City is covered for this program from a safety and liability perspective.
Chair Shepherd explained that she only raised this as a point of clarification so that it does not come out of the permitting fee or somehow lead to an offset.
Commissioner Mevers suggested that if the engineering inspection is added to the permit process it will become oppressive in cost to the individual, residents may try to find ways around it or ignore it and run the risk, and that bothers him.
Commissioner Klein suggested that City Council and Staff would address the fee when it gets that far.
Commissioner Mevers questioned that the acceptable fee should be appropriate to the amount of time Staff must devote to administration of the process.
Commissioner Klein stated, maybe not; that maybe it is a service that the City has to absorb through the general overhead for the people that live here, and it is up to Council to decide.
Senior Engineer Dragoo explained that the Commission will make a recommendation, the City Council will instruct their counsel to draft an Ordinance, possibly using the Staff Ordinance as a guide; and that is when things will filter out and all the pieces will fall into place. He suggested that if an inspection is needed or on-site inspections per vehicle at the City Attorney’s direction, then that is what the Council would consider. Senior Engineer Dragoo suggested that they will be struggling with the policy issues, such as whether to include a site inspection for every RV or if a permit is issued in a similar manner to the dumpster permit issuance policy.
Chair Shepherd suggested that when the Commission sends this report to the City Council, they can describe their concerns regarding the permit fee, the procedure, and the fact that the Commission did discuss issues from a fiscal responsibility perspective, but did not have enough information to suggest a fee structure and thought this was outside the Commission’s realm of authority. Chair Shepherd stated that, whatever decision is made, she would like to see in the discussion that the Commission has deliberated on the issues raised.
Commissioner Bilezerian pointed out one of the disadvantages of Option (d) listed at the bottom of circle page 10 “Signage cost of approximately $10,000”, and explained that Staff indicated that for 19 locations citywide it would cost the Department $10,000 to furnish and install signs prior to any permits being obtained. Commissioner Bilezerian stated that the City would be negative $10,000 at that point, and Staff time for field investigations would be in addition to that; that at some point the fee would have to be fair, based on Staff time plus other factors, such as maintenance costs. He explained that, after Staff starts issuing permits, it would take the City some time to recoup the costs. He asked if the permit would be yearly.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that it depends on the Ordinance—that the 72-hour permit is for six months.
Chair Shepherd commented that Staff might not have to go to the locations very often, since some residents may not be parking near their property, and the percentage of RVs requiring permits has not been determined.
Senior Engineer Dragoo pointed out that the signs would be placed at entry points to the City.
Traffic Engineer Rydell described the signs as regulatory, on a white background with typical verbiage.
Chair Shepherd asked what their sister cities use, and commented that she has not seen any signs.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that he is not sure that they use anything, but stated that many of the other agencies felt, from a legal perspective, that using signage at the entry point was how they would do their notification; that there were no signs throughout residential neighborhoods.
Chair Shepherd stated that she will take notice of the entrances to Rancho Palos Verdes’ sister cities to determine if signs are posted.
Traffic Engineer Rydell reported that the City of Del Mar has signs at every entrance location, they are approximately 30” x 30”, and they state exactly what the RV restrictions are.
Chair Shepherd asked if the signs are permanently installed or just for a specified period to advise, followed by removal.
Traffic Engineer Rydell stated that they are permanent.
Chair Shepherd suggested asking the City Attorney to determine why some cities do not have signs and if they are necessary, so that Rancho Palos Verdes does not spend $10,000 if signs are not required for liability purposes.
Commissioner Klein suggested the signs would be more circumspect to inform the citizenry.
Chair Shepherd suggested identifying registered owners of RVs through the organizations and sending notices.
Traffic Engineer Rydell questioned that if the City does not post the signs, how will they advise people coming into the City who are not aware of the restrictions.
Chair Shepherd asked if these people are coming to visit in the City.
Senior Engineer Dragoo explained that they are coming from Torrance or other cities.
Chair Shepherd stated that if they are coming from another city, when they receive a citation they will know; and if they are a resident, the City needs to be friendlier. She questioned how people residing in a city find out what the Code enforcement issues are within that city.
Traffic Engineer Rydell gave an example of street sweeping signs that are posted at the entrance to locations in residential areas.
Senior Engineer Dragoo stated that he believes that signage is a requirement in order to issue a citation.
Chair Shepherd asked whether the signs are permanent or for a specified period for notification purposes. She questioned that if it is a regulation, why are other cities not doing it,
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that the City cannot have parking or stopping restrictions unless they are marked and the restrictions identified.
Commissioner Wright asked what city is not posting signage.
Chair Shepherd stated that she is asking if Palos Verdes Estates, Rolling Hills, and Rolling Hills Estates have any similar signage at their entrances; that she enters those cities and she does not remember seeing signage.
Commissioner Mevers suggested that mailing might be much less expensive than $10,000 worth of signs.
Traffic Engineer Rydell explained that other cities take different approaches, and other City Attorneys do not necessarily believe that fees are legal. He believes that if Rancho Palos Verdes takes one of these actions, they have an obligation to notify the residents of the law. Traffic Engineer Rydell suggested that this should not be debatable. He explained that removing the signs after a notification period does not satisfy the need of making sure people are aware of the restrictions. He stated that if it is someone coming from another city, Rancho Palos Verdes must care that outsiders are notified; and he does not believe that a citation is the appropriate way for them to be notified.
Senior Engineer Dragoo stated that Rolling Hills Estates has signs.
Deputy Souza confirmed that Rolling Hills Estates has signs all over, usually at the entry. He explained that most of their streets do not go through, and signs are usually posted at the entryway, and that they look much like “no parking” signs—approximately 12” x 18”.
Deputy Chris Knox reported that north of Hawthorne as you leave Rancho Palos Verdes just north of Ravenspur to enter Rolling Hills Estates, there is a sign on the right saying “no parking 3:00 am – 5:00 am Rolling Hills Estates” and it lists the Code, describing it as red lettering on a white background.
Commissioner Wright hypothesized that the Sheriff’s Department tows a vehicle, the person commands a hearing, and the Sheriff’s Department loses the hearing because the hearing officer rules for the complainant and says the Sheriff will pay the towing fees. He asked what would it cost the City or County in towing fees.
Deputy Souza responded that it depends on the City; that some have other fees that the Sheriff can waive, but he is not sure of the cost of towing—possibly $80-$90, depending on the number of days.