Some have called the Parking Ordinance a blanket ordinance. A one-size fits all. That is not true. But for those who listen and get their information from that gossip-column page I would like to dispel their fiction and offer up facts. It is hard to argue facts.

What the ordinance actually says is that it's against the law to park anywhere in your front yard except in the driveway or a parking area approved by our Zoning Administrator. So what is an approved parking area?

A) Parking areas that will be approved by the ZA include:

(1) Poured concrete slab,

(2) Asphalt paved area,

(3) Concrete stepping stones, paver, brick laid out to form a parking pad,

(4) Any pervious substrate such as gravel, crush and run, ground asphalt, mulch, pine stra contained within a boundary/border made of landscaped timber, railroad timber, landscaping blocks, brick, solid concrete blocks. Such as to contain substrate.

So, the truth is there are 10 types of parking pads listed above. Ten (10) options. I don't know how anybody can call the ordinance a one-size fits all when there is 10 options.

Next, are the locations where these 10 optional parking areas can be:

First choice - Additional parking areas to be next to, adjoining, “either side” of original driveway.

Second Choice – Side yard area on the side of the home containing the driveway.

Third choice – The opposite side yard area than the original driveway.

Fourth Choice – Area in front of the home, but as close to side yard areas as possible.

So, we have 5 locations for you to put your additional parking. Again, not a one-size fits all. The ordinance also says that you can park on the grass in front of the home for temporary parking or by visitors as long as it does not kill the grass. And if you have already killed the grass, and have nothing left but dirt, visitors are allowed to temporarily park on the dirt.

So, we have addressed the issue about visitors, and temporary parking, and have 5 available options for location of a parking area to be constructed with 10 types of parking pads. Not sure why or how anyone can say it is a one-size fits all with no flexibility.

In fact, for all the people who have requested that we address the issue of parking in the front yard, and asking us to put a stop to it, and to not allow it at all, this ordinance does not meet their request of 100% no parking in front yard. In fact, some of them would say this is not good enough. This is not what they asked for, this is a watered-down no parking in the yard ordinance, and they would be correct. So, my question would be “if the people in Town, who don't want parking in the grass are willing to compromise and meet somewhere in the middle and accept what we have, why aren't the opponents able to compromise and accept a happy medium?”

Basically, this ordinance says you can still park in your yard, just not on the dirt, only on the grass temporarily, and you can park where you are currently parking, but just on a parking pad. There are 10 options that go from costly to not very costly, and we are giving residents 6 months in order to spread the work and cost over that time frame. There are 5 locations to put your option choice.

In fact, what Council has created is not a one-size fits all, but a customized, made-to-order ordinance.

If the people on the gossip-column page really are interested about working with their neighbors, finding ways to work together, then it is time for them to step up to the plate, do what is right for the neighborhood, and do what is right for their neighbors.

I guess we'll see if their actions match their words.

Irmo, South Carolina