City explores parking ban

From left, City Attorney Anthony Casale; City Finance Commissioner Tammie Weiterschan; DPW Director Dale Trumbull and City Police Chief Marc Porter are shown during Tuesday’s Common Council meeting. (The Leader-Herald/Kerry Minor)

GLOVERSVILLE — City officials are still looking for a solution to parking tractor trailers, recreational vehicles and utility trailers in the city.

During Tuesday’s Common Council meeting, city officials discussed a proposal to ban all tractor trailers, utility trailers and recreational vehicles from city parking lots.

Prior to their discussion, Ron Ellis Sr. spoke to the council about issues with parking tractor trailers. He said his son is a tractor trailer driver and was told he could park in the transit yard.

Ellis said his son was told by the city that the council is thinking about having an ordinance to have tractor trailers removed from city lots.

“They only take up 45 to 50 feet down there. There is only four to five of them there. It’s a tough situation. They are all residents of the city of Gloversville. They pay property taxes here. They spend their money in the city of Gloversville and they are being pushed around,” he said.

On July 7, new rules went into effect that saw the removal of long term parking of large vehicles from the Frontage Road and Elm Street public parking lots.

Officials said in July that the issue was that the lots — which are located next to City Hall and the Farmer’s Market Pavilion — had been filling up with old, sometimes unusable recreational vehicles, utility trailers filled with old mattresses or other trash or as a dumping ground for junk cars that were sitting there for weeks or even months.

Several residents of Kingsboro Towers told The Leader-Herald in June that private trash haulers had been parking open top trailers filled with garbage in the Frontage Road lot across the street from their building at night, leading to an unsightly and smelly issue.

Department of Public Works Director Dale Trumbull said one of the issues with some of the lots is that they are asphalt and not concrete, meaning tractor trailers were damaging the lots when they put their landing gear down.

City Attorney Anthony Casale said Tuesday the change resulted in there being an increase in the amount of utility vehicles, tractor trailers and RV’s parking in other city lots.

Trumbull said several tractor trailer owners are currently using the transit department parking lot, which is fine for right now, but that could change in the future.

He said the DPW uses that lot to dump snow, dirt and sand. He said that area is also being looked at for other city development. Mayor Dayton King said the city is looking to create a new city garage for the DPW at the transit department sometime in the future.

“[The vehicles] will get in the way eventually,” Trumbull said.

Trumbull said utility trailers have been parking at Darling Field lately, a situation that is fine in the winter, but they will need to be moved come spring when soccer season starts.

Others have been parking at the location of the former Littauer Pool, something Trumbull said will not be able to continue since the city uses that as a snow dump for the northwestern side of the city.

“I think in the summer months it is a possibility they can park there, but in the winter months we use it as a snow dump,” Trumbull said.

Trumbull said discussions with other city officials led them to consider the idea of a blanket ban from parking tractor trailers and other large vehicle and trailers in city lots.

Mayor Dayton King said the city looked for another solution to where to park the vehicles after passing the July ordinance, but could not find one.

“I don’t know if they have been parking in the city lots for many years, or if it seems like there are more tractor trailer drivers in the city now than there has been previously,” King said.

Trumbull said some of the utility trailers that were being used for storage had to be moved by the city, since they could not figure out who owned them.

“Some of them are parked there with no registration on them at all, they’re just being dumped there basically,” he said.

Third Ward Councilman Vincent DeSantis said the city could look to create a space where residents could pay a nominal fee for a yearly permit to a specific lot in the city.

“I would really like to eventually see is working towards having a specific space that is concrete and available for them,” DeSantis said.

Second Ward Councilman Arthur Simonds said the city should try to find a place for those working truck drivers who need a place to park their vehicles. He said the parking of recreational vehicles and utility trailers are a different issue.

“I do think we should give the drivers somewhere in the city that is reasonable. We can work with the DPW to come up with a system,” he said.

King said there may be businesses in the area that may be willing to allow parking of tractor trailers and other large vehicles for a fee as well.

King said the city won’t be giving out tickets to those parked in the transit lot currently. Trumbull said currently people are fine to park there, although that could change if a large amount of snow falls.

“It’s not the city’s responsibility to find parking for people. I’ve been here for eight years and this hasn’t been an issue for eight years. I’ve got to think that either people have new jobs, or they no longer can park somewhere else,” King said. ” I think we want to help people who work in the city and live here, however, if it is space we need for city resources we can’t use that.”

King said if there was a solution the city would find one.

Kerry Minor can be reached at kminor@leaderherald.com.

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