Village council reviews parking restrictions

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By Dedra Cordle
Staff Writer

Parking restrictions in the village of Urbancrest could receive a second look.

At the March meeting, councilwoman Nikky Ziglar-Zimmerman inquired as to whether the body would considered modifying the parking restrictions along First, Second and Central avenues.

“I don’t think it’s fair that one side is allowed access to parking and the other side is not,” she said.

She added that she has heard from residents who are bothered by the law and shared their worries they that would be fined for guest parking on the street. Mayor Joseph Barnes Sr. later said that, to his knowledge, no resident has been fined for temporary guest parking.

The council agreed with Ziglar-Zimmerman and said they were willing to review the legislation in the future.

The council established parking restrictions along First, Second and Central avenues in 2008 during a lengthy fight to keep drug traffickers out of the village.

According to Barnes, dealers would come from “all over the state and region” to sell drugs in their community as it provided easy access to several highways.

“It was a convenient location for them to sell their illegal goods. We were like their little drive-through,” he said.

To combat the issue, residents established a neighborhood block watch, the village partnered with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and council enacted parking restrictions along popular selling hot spots.

Barnes said that trifecta helped to bring the illegal activity down.

“It did a great job of removing that unwanted element in the village,” he said.

In other news, members of the health and safety committee said they have drafted legislation for council to review regarding the restriction of livestock in the village. Recently, council has received a number of complaints about a growing number of chickens in the area, and also a pig that was thought to be a therapy animal. Councilwoman Alicia Wiggins said they would present the legislation to the village law director at a later date.

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