New Akron parking ban causing controversy among residents

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AKRON - Some Northeast Ohio residents will need to watch where they park, even in their own yards.

A new ordinance goes into effect, limiting where people can put their vehicles or other large items, like boats.

"A couple of residents have called me about maybe big-sized boats or vehicles being parked on the grass and I started forwarding those complaints downtown. And then I found out we didn't have an ordinance for that," said Akron city councilman Donnie Kammer.

Kammer set out to change the law.  Over the past year or so, he started gathering support for a city ordinance that makes it a violation to park a vehicle or boat in the grass on the opposite side of a home's driveway.

"If the neighbors have a big sized boat or a vehicle in the side yard, I mean, I believe a side yard should be for landscaping, grass and for children to play in. When you do pull in the grass, you create ruts and just creates a different sight that I don't think is neighborly," Kammer said.

Councilman Kammer says in 2012, the city passed an ordinance, making it a violation to park a vehicle in the front lawn of a home.  Residents can still park behind their homes, although Kammer admits, he first wanted to ban that practice as well, but backed off.

"I think it's great, I think Donnie has done a great job in having to not look at that kind of thing in our neighborhood. It would just help make the neighborhood look a little bit better," said resident Julie Smith.

Another Akron resident told Fox 8 off camera, that some people have no other choice but park on the grass, she says some homes have limited parking in driveways and on the street.

"I think it's great, I mean, it just makes neighborhoods look trashy when you have items like that, cars and vehicles in yards and side yards, it just ruins the value of the neighborhood," said resident Sharon Evans.

The ordinance will take effect after Mayor Don Plusquellic signs it into law.

Councilman Kammer says a violator would get a verbal or written warning on the first offense, then could be charged a fine for future violations.