RV ordinance will give city chance to study effectiveness

CARLSBAD — During the winter months, the Carlsbad City Council can expect to consider a new RV ordinance presented by staff members, which will serve as a one-year test pilot. 

Over the years, the city of Carlsbad has heard complaints regarding extended RV parking on city and residential streets and has directed its staff members to move forward with an ordinance.

“The frequency of complaints at city council meetings and to our police, transportation, and housing and neighborhood services departments has increased throughout the years,” said Bryan Jones, deputy transportation director. “The city has received an increase in complaints from residents regarding RV parking and the impact the practice has on their quality of life.”

Jones pointed out that these complaints do increase significantly during the peak tourism months. And the areas affected are located in the four quadrants of Carlsbad.

Although overnight camping on city streets is already illegal, Jones said, the City of Carlsbad Police Department has limited tools to address these complaints and dedicates a lot of time responding to the negative effects of overnight parking and camping.

Jodee Sasway, public information officer for the City of Carlsbad Police Department, said they understand the concerns of community members and is actively enforcing all applicable laws and ordinances on residential streets when recreational vehicle parking issues arise.

“Recreational vehicle issues at one time or another have affected most residential areas throughout the City of Carlsbad driving the importance of the citywide recreational vehicle plan,” she said. “It is common for parkers to move from one area to another or just far enough down the street to appease the law.”

According to Sasway, while overnight camping on Carlsbad city streets is prohibited these oversized vehicles also have parking restrictions.

“Oversized vehicles are not allowed to park from Memorial Day to Labor Day on the west curb line of Carlsbad Boulevard from Redwood Street to Cherry Street,” Sasway said. “The California Vehicle Code section 22651 makes it illegal for any vehicle to park on a city street for more than 72 hours at a time.”

This type of oversized vehicle, Sasway said, needs to be moved one-tenth of a mile every 72 hours. She continued, “If the vehicle is moved, the police department no longer has the authority to cite or tow it.”

Jones wants residents to know that last month, city council asked staff members to add three exceptions to the proposed ordinance to accommodate both its city residents and visitors who own RVs.

The exceptions included a yearly residential permit for Carlsbad residents who own an RV to apply for a no-fee permit to park on their residential public street for up to 72 hours; a no-fee temporary 72 hour permit for their guest to park on their residential street; and, a commercial property permit which would allow hotels or motels to accept RV guest parking on its nearby streets if the parking lots were full.

“The city would issue each hotel and motel reusable permits that they can give to guests,” he said. Jones added, “This exception would apply only while the RV occupants are paying guests of the hotel or motel.”

Bryan said the one-year test pilot ordinance would ..


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