By Brandon HENSLEY
The Crescenta Valley Town Council has decided to urge L.A. County Public Works to post signs in certain La Crescenta areas restricting parking for more than 30 minutes from 2 a.m. to 4 a.m.
In its Aug. 15 general public meeting, council held a forum that included Pete Flores from the county’s Traffic and Lighting Division who answered questions and concerns from the audience regarding the ongoing presence of big rigs in the area.
Councilmember Robbyn Battles said this week that members have corresponded via email and will “give the green light” to county to post the signs restricting early morning parking. Those places will include the freeway overpasses on Ramsdell, Rosemont, La Crescenta and Briggs avenues and the underpass on Pennsylvania Avenue.
Flores said there already is an ordinance in place that makes it illegal for any vehicle to park at the Pennsylvania location during that time period. Because there are no signs, though, residents have complained that commercial vehicles have taken advantage of those spots. Audience members at the meeting complained that big rigs often stay in town well after the 72-hour law that requires them to move out.
What the 2 a.m. to 4 a.m. signs won’t initially do is keep the trucks off of the Ramsdell overpass during school hours when Crescenta Valley High School students would otherwise be able to park. But Battles said drivers who plan on staying several days would tire of having to move their trucks in the morning and would move out of town by the time school started.
“It really allows sheriffs and highway patrol to monitor it better and be able to [write tickets],” she said. “It’s a better solution for everyone.”
Battles said she expected the signs would be installed within a month from whenever council gave the go-ahead to county.
If the signs aren’t as successful as council hopes, its next step would possibly be to pursue an ordinance to restrict all commercial parking in La Crescenta, with exceptions being RVs and food trucks.
Battles said Pasadena’s commercial parking rules are so strict the trucks were pushed to Altadena, and Altadena was forced to adopt an ordinance banning big rig parking. That might happen here and Battles said council has to look at these options because of a handful of drivers who simply stay too long.
“We’re going to push the problem somewhere else,” she said. “[But] that’s not our intent … we’re not after the people that are doing business. We’re not after the guy who’s making a living and stopping his truck and trying to get some sleep.”
Commercial vehicles are defined as being 10,000 pounds or over. If council is to pursue an area-wide ban, it would not happen for several months, Battles said.
CV Sheriff Captain Bill Song was also at last week’s meeting, and he took questions regarding trucks staying past the 72-hour limit in a particular spot. Song said drivers know that one trick is when a truck gets tagged to simply move the vehicle forward a few feet. It would then have to be tagged all over again, creating more time for the driver to stay without getting ticketed.
The audience was adamant that not enough was being done to enforce the 72-hour rule, but Song said he was surprised to hear that.
“I get a lot of complaints that [law enforcement] is out there too much,” he said.
A survey on the truck issue is available to take online at thecvcouncil.com.
On the same website, applications to run for a spot on the town council are also available. Candidates must live in the unincorporated part of La Crescenta/Montrose. The deadline to submit an application is Oct. 9 at midnight.
The next CVCT meeting is scheduled for Sept. 19 at 7 p.m. inside the La Crescenta Library Community Room, 2809 Foothill Blvd., La Crescenta.