Mt. Lebanon no parking

Harry Funk / The Almanac

Mt. Lebanon officials look to improve parking enforcement with license plate recognition.

Overnight parking on public streets in Mt. Lebanon is subject to new provisions.

Residents will be permitted to request up to 20 exceptions per vehicle license plates per year.

“Mt. Lebanon currently prohibits overnight parking on public streets. This is not an ordinance that suddenly is going to prohibit parking. That’s been on the books since the mid-1970s. This is just adjusting an existing ordinance,” Commissioner Steve Silverman said.

He and other commissioners voted unanimously April 27 to approve an ordinance that amends the Mt. Lebanon code. In February, they decided on Oct. 1 for the start of a grace period prior to enforcement of a key provision of the ordinance beginning Jan. 1.

The ordinance gained approval following extensive discussion during the past three-plus years as commissioners and municipal staff members sought to arrive at a solution to abuse of the system that was in place for residents to ask for exceptions to the parking prohibition on public streets between 2 and 6 a.m.

As far back as February 2018, Commissioner Craig Grella reported the findings of research on six years’ worth of overnight parking requests.

“In some cases, we had individual addresses requesting multiple thousands,” he said at that time. “In some cases, we had addresses requesting more than there are nights in that time period. So they’re requesting for multiple license plates.”

With enactment of the new ordinance, a resident who seeks to exceed 20 requests must follow either an existing process to obtain a permit for an overnight parking zone or a new process to establish and obtain a permit for a special permit parking space, which requires a demonstration of good reason and items beyond the control of the applicant.

Reasons cited in the Mt. Lebanon Code include guests who are staying overnight, disabled motor vehicles and construction projects that or prevent access to a driveway or parking area. If more than one inch of snow accumulates, no one may park on the street for any reason, to allow plows to clear the roads safely.

The municipality will monitor overnight requests through a database management system that includes a feature to notify residents of where they stand with regard to reaching the limit.

Multimedia Reporter

Staff writer Harry Funk, a professional journalist for three-plus decades, has been on the staff of The Almanac since 2015. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and master of business administration, both from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

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