Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett is asking the Common Council to reinstate overnight parking regulations. They have not been enforced since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement, Barrett says the reason is to assist the city’s Department of Public Works with their annual fall leaf collection service. It has recently gotten underway and has seen parked vehicles making the work more difficult.
Barrett says this service has a short time frame to be completed before winter weather arrives. He points to last year when a snowfall on Halloween suspended pickup for several weeks. Any delays in how long this takes can also delay when DPW vehicles are prepped to handle the winter season, impacting the city’s response to snow and ice removal.
The Common Council is scheduled to meet Tuesday, October 13, 2020.
Read Barrett’s full comments below:
“We need the Council to take action tomorrow to ensure night parking regulations are reinstated. Failing to do so has a major operational impact on the City’s ability to properly collect leaves and manage street conditions going forward. Already we are seeing major leaf piles that are not accessible to sanitation drivers due to the lack of alternate side parking, which is an important part of night parking regulations.
“I know residents want their leaves picked up. It is an important quality of life service that residents have come to expect. The window of opportunity for leaf collection is very narrow, and it depends on Mother Nature. I wish we could be confident we had time, but keep in mind, last year it snowed on Halloween.
“The same men and women who clear the streets of leaves are then redeployed to handle snow and ice control. So, when leaf collection is delayed, handling winter weather conditions is delayed. We simply can’t have that. Residents, businesses and visitors rely on safe streets to get around the city.
“From the very beginning of the pandemic, our approach has been to be sensitive to the impacts of the health emergency on City residents. We relaxed parking enforcement last spring as many businesses shut down and residents were being told to stay home. The City’s plan has always been for parking enforcement to resume and now is the time. With fall here, and winter following, we must ensure our streets are clear so our DPW crews can perform these important municipal services.”