City council discusses parking limitations


Nick LoweryReporter

The Students’ Association objected to a ban on street parking in the Brookings community, saying it would be directly unfair to students.

On-street parking may be banned on select streets around campus from midnight to 5 a.m. between Nov. 15 and March 15 every year.

The Ad Hoc Parking Committee was formed to analyze and discuss parking problems in the city. The committee presented five recommendations at the Brookings City Council’s Feb. 8 meeting, one of which was to remove parking from the area between Fourth and 11th streets and 12th and 16th avenues. This area surrounds the SDSU campus, and many students live there.

One of the committee’s concerns was the number of residents living in the area’s rental properties. Legally, a rental property must have enough off-street parking for every resident on the lease. The major concern is that there are often more people living in a house than are actually on the lease.

“If you have a rental and there are people unofficially living there, they have to park on the street and this (the parking ban) is going to curtail that,” said John Kubal, City Council member and chairman of the Ad Hoc Parking Committee.

Because of this, there have been complaints of congestion in the older parts of the city, and Kubal said the parking ban was just one solution discussed as a reaction to these complaints.

“This was one partial solution to see how it works, and if it pans out, it could go to other areas,” Kubal said.

The Students’ Association unanimously passed a resolution to oppose the recommendation.

“You’re targeting such a small area of town,” said Anthony Sutton, SA Finance Chair and the student chair of the Parking and Traffic Committee. “If you’re going to do that, do it to the entire town … We just feel they inadvertently targeted students.”

SA President Brett Monson also said that he felt a ban would be targeting students.

“If it’s something that’s going to prevent students from parking there, we’re not going to be in favor of it,” Monson said.

The Ad Hoc Parking Committee’s recommendations were referred by the City Council to the Brookings Traffic Safety Committee for review and further discussion. The City Council asked the Traffic Safety Committee to deliver its recommendations in 60 days, at which time the City Council would hold a final vote on the issue.

There were several concerns voiced during the final meeting of the Ad Hoc Parking Committee on Jan. 18.

According to the meeting’s minutes, like Sutton, Brookings Police Chief Jeff Miller felt that the ban was discriminatory because it focused only on a certain area of town. He also noted that his department did not have the manpower to enforce the ban.

Beverly Dobbs, a member of the City Council and the Ad Hoc Parking Committee, said the ban might be unnecessary and may not address the issue of illegal residents.

“All but a very few residents have off-street parking,” she said. “If rentals were rented properly this would not be as much of a problem,” she said.

All Brookings City Council meetings and Traffic Safety Committee meetings are open to the public. The City Council meets on the second and fourth Tuesday of every month at 6 p.m. in City Hall. The Traffic Safety Meeting meets on the second Thursday of each month at 12:10 p.m. in City Hall.

#1.2042950:3028189815.png:road-GALLAGHER.png:Overnight parking could be banned on the streets located near campus.:Collegian Photo by Robby Gallagher