Glendale Heights candidates eye parking complaints
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Just a few weeks before spring street sweeping begins in Glendale Heights, candidates for the District 1 trustee seat are hearing concerns about parking restrictions designed to clear the way for maintenance equipment.
Incumbent Ed Pope and challenger H. William Schmidt say residents have contacted them complaining about the eight-hour no-parking restrictions that occur once a week throughout the village.
"There are people who are not happy with the fact that they can't park on a street sweeping day even though the street is not swept or sweeping goes by early in the morning and they still have to stay off the street until 4 p.m.," Schmidt said.
When the village started a new street sweeping program last April, public services staff thought the parking restrictions — which last from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the same day of the week — were reasonable because many residents would be at work during those times, said Guy Marino, deputy public services director.
But families with multiple vehicles say finding driveway space during the restricted hours can be an issue, Pope said.
"If everyone's home on street sweeping day, there's nowhere to park," Pope said. "The residents are finding that 'the street sweeper went by my house at 8:15 (a.m.) and I can't park on my street.'"
Although trustee candidates are hearing concerns, police say they gave fair notice of the street sweeping ordinance, issuing warnings for eight months before beginning to issue $25 citations in December.
"We do not issue that many (citations) for that violation," Cmdr. Dennis Schar said.
Officers don't deliberately seek out violators of the street sweeping parking restrictions, but "if they see it they write it," Schar said.
Pope said a possible change to the restrictions is being considered by a village committee. Schmidt said he thinks better communication could ease some resident worries.
"I'd like to see a little more communication with the residents, possibly if a street is not going to be swept that they are advised of that or once it has been swept that they can park again," Schmidt said.
Marino said different complaints came in before the new street sweeping program began, when no parking restrictions were imposed and a contractor swept streets for the village.
"In the past, a lot of complaints came back that debris was left on the street because cars were parked there," Marino said. "We're going back and fourth and we understand the residents' concerns."
Glendale Heights trustees seats for districts 3 and 4 also are up for election April 5. In District 3, candidate Mike Light faces write-in candidate Robert Tolentino. In District 4, Trustee Pat Maritato is running unopposed.
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