Skateboard Ordinance by fionan

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									                                  ORDINANCE NO. ______

               AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF
               THE CITY OF MERCED, CALIFORNIA,
               AMENDING CHAPTERS 10.45 AND 10.60 OF THE
               MERCED MUNICIPAL CODE DEALING WITH
               SKATEBOARDS AND SKATEBOARD PARKS

       THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF MERCED DOES ORDAIN
AS FOLLOWS:
       SECTION 1.        ADDITION TO CODE. Title 10, “Vehicles and
Traffic,” of the Merced Municipal Code is hereby amended by amending Chapter
10.45, “Roller Blades, Skateboards and Other Devices,” to read as follows:

                                         “Chapter 10.45

                      ROLLER BLADES, SKATEBOARDS AND
                          OTHER SIMILAR DEVICES

               Sections:
               10.45.010               Definitions.
               10.45.020               Use of Skateboards, Roller Blades
                                       or Similar Devices; Where
                                       Prohibited.
               10.45.030               City Council’s Authority to
                                       Prohibit the Use of Skateboards,
                                       Roller Blades or Similar Devices.
               10.45.040               Use of Skateboards, Roller Blades
                                       and Similar Devices Not Prohibited
                                       on Designated Bike Paths.
               10.45.050               Grant of Approval For Use of Skateboards,
                                       Roller Skates or Other Coaster Devices in
                                       Prohibited Areas.
               10.45.060               Use of Skateboards, Roller Blades
                                       and Similar Devices on School
                                       Campuses; Posting Signs.



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               10.45.070               Manner of Operation of
                                       Skateboards, Roller Blades and
                                       Similar Devices.
               10.45.080               Exemptions: Use of Human or
                                       Motor-propelled Devices by
                                       Disabled Persons; Transportation
                                       of Infants; Transportation of Goods
                                       or Merchandise.
               10.45.090               Safety Equipment Required at
                                       Skating Facilities.
               10.45.100               Signs at Skateboard Parks.
               10.45.110               Seizing of Skateboard.
               10.45.120               Violation-Infraction/Misdemeanor.
               10.45.130               Enforcement.
               10.45.140               Contesting Citations.
               10.45.150               The Administrative Hearing
                                       Process.
               10.45.160               Payments Collected by Director of
                                       Finance.

               10.45.010 Definitions.

               For the purposes of this Chapter, the following words shall be defined
               as follows:

                A. „Skateboard‟ means any platform of any composition or size to
               which two or more wheels are attached and which is intended to be
               ridden or propelled by one or more persons standing or kneeling upon
               it and to which there is not affixed to it any seat or any device or
               mechanism to turn and control the wheels.

                B. „Roller skate‟ means any shoe, boot or other footwear, or device
               which may be attached to the foot or footwear, to which one or more
               wheels are attached, including wheels that are „in line,‟ also known as
               „roller blades.‟

               C. „Coaster device‟ means any platform of any composition or size
               to which two or more wheels are attached and which can be ridden or
               propelled by one or more persons. „Coaster device‟ does not include
               wheel chairs, bicycles, or motorized vehicles.
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               D.      „Private Property‟ means any property held by private interests
               that is used primarily for business, commercial, residential, office
               space, business park, religious, multifamily, or recreational purposes.
               This shall also include the parking facilities for these „private
               property‟ areas.

               E.      „Public Property‟ means any property owned or maintained by
               the City, any public agency or public school district and any public
               utility within the geographical boundaries of the City, including any
               public square, street, sidewalk or highway.

               F.     „Public facility‟ means any building, park, plaza, courtyard,
               parking lot, walkway, path, loading dock or other facility that is
               owned or maintained by the City, any public agency or public school
               district, or any public utility. „Public facility‟ does not include
               sidewalks.

               G.     „Sidewalk‟ means that portion of a street or highway, other than
               the roadway, set apart by curbs, barriers, markings or delineation for
               pedestrian travel.

               H.     „Nuisance‟ means any activity which (1) threatens injury to
               persons or property, (2) creates an obstruction or presents a hazard to
               the free use of public or private property by pedestrians or motorists,
               or (3) generates loud or unreasonable noise.

               10.45.020 Use of Skateboards, Roller Blades or Similar Devices;
               Where Prohibited.

               No person shall ride, use or propel any skateboard, roller blade, roller
               skate or other coaster device, whether powered by human or
               motorized means:

               A.    In or upon any privately owned, operated, or controlled
               property, including, but not limited to parking lots or structures,
               without first obtaining the consent of the property owner, his or her
               designee, or a lawful occupant; or,


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               B.     In or upon any public facility, including, but not limited to
               parking lots or structures, with the exception of any facility that is
               specifically designated for such use; or,

               C.     On any ramp designed or built to afford access to buildings or
               structures by disabled persons; or,

               D.    In a manner which creates a nuisance as defined in Section
               10.45.010; or,

               E.     While the skateboard, roller blade, roller skate or other coaster
               device, or the user or rider is attached or in any manner connected to
               any streetcar or vehicle on the roadway; or,

               F.    While under the influence of an alcoholic beverage or any drug,
               or under the combined influence of an alcoholic beverage and any
               drug; or,

               G.    On any roadway when visibility is poor because of weather
               conditions, lighting, or other conditions; or

               H.    In or upon any public right-of-way, roadway, pavement,
               including cross-streets, parking lot or sidewalk, or any improvement
               constructed or placed on a sidewalk, located within the following
               area:

                       The area bounded by 16th Street from „G‟ Street to „V‟ Street;
                       „V‟ Street from 16th Street to 18th Street; 18th Street from „V‟
                       Street to Martin Luther King, Jr., Way; Martin Luther King, Jr.,
                       Way from 18th Street to Main Street; Main Street from Martin
                       Luther King, Jr., Way, to „G‟ Street.

                       1.      The public works department is hereby directed to post
                               and maintain signs providing notice that the use of
                               skateboards, roller blades, roller skates, or other coaster
                               devices is prohibited in the aforementioned area.

                       2.      Notwithstanding the preceding, the use of skateboards,
                               roller blades, roller skates or other coaster devices used

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                               as a means of transportation shall not be prohibited on
                               the sidewalks adjacent to 16th Street.

               10.45.030 City Council’s Authority to Prohibit the Use of
               Skateboards, Roller Blades or Similar Devices.

               The City Council may by resolution prohibit skateboarding, roller
               blading, roller skating, or the use of other coaster devices on public
               streets, sidewalks, parking lots and other public property when it is
               determined to be necessary to protect the health, safety, and welfare of
               pedestrians, motorists or persons operating said skateboards on said
               streets and sidewalks.

               10.45.040 Use of Skateboards, Roller Blades and Similar Devices
               Not Prohibited on Designated Bike Paths.

               This code does not prohibit travel by human powered skateboard,
               roller blade, roller skate or other similar coaster device upon
               designated City bike paths so long as they do not interfere with use of
               the path and the rider or user abides by all rules which apply to such
               pathways, and are not otherwise prohibited by law.

               10.45.050 Grant of Approval For Use of Skateboards, Roller
               Skates or Other Coaster Devices in Prohibited Areas.

               The City Council may, by resolution, grant approval for the use of
               roadways, City-owned streets, parking lots, parking structures and
               sidewalks for organized skating events of community-wide interest
               and importance. In granting such approval, the Council may impose
               such conditions, restrictions and requirements as it deems necessary or
               desirable in order to protect the public interest and promote the
               general welfare. Furthermore, the City Manager in his sole discretion
               may suspend the enforcement provisions of this Chapter to
               accommodate special events when so requested by the event
               organizer.




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               10.45.060 Use of Skateboards, Roller Blades and Similar Devices
               on School Campuses; Posting Signs.

               A.     Prior to the enforcement of the prohibition of skateboarding,
               roller blading, roller skating or use of other coaster devices at any
               school campus, and only when these activities create a nuisance as
               defined in Section 10.45.010, a sign announcing a school‟s policy
               prohibiting these activities must be posted along with a sign
               announcing the section of this article pertaining to the regulation of
               skateboarding, roller blading, roller skating, and the use of coaster
               devices, Section 10.45.020.

               B.     Notwithstanding Section 10.45.020, school officials may permit
               skateboarding, roller blading, roller skating or the use of coaster
               devices on a posted campus as part of a school-supervised recreational
               or athletic activity.

               10.45.070 Manner of Operation of Skateboards, Roller Blades
               and Similar Devices.

               A.     When riding in or upon a roadway, persons riding, using, or
               propelling skateboards, roller roller blades, roller skates or other
               coaster devices, as otherwise permitted under this Chapter, shall obey
               all vehicle code provisions which regulate the operation of bicycles
               and which are reasonably applicable to the use of skateboards, roller
               skates or other coaster devices. No person riding, using or propelling
               any skateboard, roller blade, roller skate or other coaster device,
               whether powered by human or motorized means shall fail to obey any
               traffic control signal or pedestrian traffic control signal.

               B.     When riding upon a sidewalk, persons riding, using, or
               propelling skateboards, roller skates or other coaster devices, as
               otherwise permitted under this Chapter, shall obey the following rules
               of the road:

                       1.      Riders or users shall yield the right-of-way to pedestrians
                               whenever and wherever they are encountered; and,

                       2.      Riders or users shall proceed with due care and at a safe
                               speed.
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               C.     No person shall ride, use or propel a skateboard, roller skate or
               other coaster device recklessly, or in such a manner as to cause or
               threaten to cause injury to himself or others, or to cause or threaten to
               cause damage to public or private property.

               10.45.080 Exemptions: Use of Human or Motor-propelled
               Devices by Disabled Persons; Transportation of Infants;
               Transportation of Goods or Merchandise.

               This Chapter shall not apply to any of the following:

               A.      The use of human or motor-propelled devices on any sidewalk,
               street, public right-of-way, or upon any land, property, or facility
               owned or controlled by the City of Merced by any person who is
               disabled or handicapped, or whose ability to walk is impaired as
               shown by medical evidence; or,

               B.    Any device designated, intended and used solely for the
               transportation of infants; or,

               C.    The transportation of goods or merchandise to and
               from the place of purchase or storage.

               10.45.090 Safety Equipment Required at Skating Facilities.

               Every person skateboarding, roller blading, roller skating or using any
               other coaster device at a publicly owned or operated facility for such
               use shall wear a helmet, elbow pads and knee pads while so
               skateboarding, roller blading, roller skating or using any other coaster
               device.

               10.45.100 Signs at Skateboard Parks.

               The public works department is hereby directed to post and maintain
               signs at all publicly owned skate parks within the City providing
               notice that any person riding a skateboard, skates, or using any other
               coaster device in the facility must wear a helmet, elbow pads and knee
               pads, and that any person failing to do so will be subject to citation
               under Section 10.45.090.
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               10.45.110 Seizing of Skateboard.

               Whenever a Police Officer has probable cause to believe a skateboard
               was used or is being used in violation of any provision of this Chapter,
               the Police Officer may seize the skateboard.

               10.45.120 Violation-Infraction/Misdemeanor.

               A.      Any person who violates any provision of this Chapter is guilty
               of an infraction. Nothing in this Chapter shall prevent the City from
               pursuing criminal, civil, administrative or any other legal remedy to
               address violations of this Chapter. The penalty for the first violation
               of this Chapter shall be punishable by an administrative, criminal or
               civil fine in the amount of $25. The second violation of this Chapter
               shall be punishable by a fine in the amount of $50. The third violation
               of this Chapter shall be punishable by a fine in the amount of $100.
               Any person who violates any provision of this Chapter four or more
               times is guilty of a misdemeanor.

               B.     An additional optional penalty for a violation of any provision
               of this Chapter shall be forfeiture of any skateboard used in violation
               of this Chapter, unless it is proven that the defendant does not own the
               skateboard and the owner did not or could not have reasonably known
               that the skateboard would be used in violation of this Chapter.

               10.45.130 Enforcement.

               A.     Any person authorized to enforce ordinances may issue a
               citation to any person who violates this Chapter.

               B.     The citation shall set forth the section or sections of this
               Chapter so violated; the date; the approximate time thereof; the
               location where the violation occurred; the amount of the fine; a
               statement printed on the notice indicating that payment of the fine is
               required to be made not later than 21 calendar days from the date of
               citation issuance; the procedure for the alleged violator to deposit the
               amount of the fine with the Finance Officer or to contest the citation
               pursuant to 10.45.140; and an appropriate notice to the recipient of his

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               or her right not to contest the violation and appropriate instructions
               and procedures for payment, as prescribed by the Finance Officer.

               C.    Any person to whom a ticket is issued may, within 21 days of
               receipt, pay the amount of the fine in lieu of contesting the violation.
               Upon timely payment under this section, unless it is determined that
               the penalty for the violation shall include forfeiture of a skateboard
               used in violation of this Chapter, the Police Department shall make
               any skateboard seized under this section available for return to the
               offender pursuant to the procedures established by the Police
               Department.

               10.45.140 Contesting Citations.

               A.     For a period of 21 calendar days from the issuance of the
               citation, a person may request an initial review of the citation by the
               issuing agency. The request may be made by telephone, in writing, or
               in person. There shall be no charge for this review.

               B.     If, following the initial review, the issuing agency is satisfied
               that the violation did not occur, or that extenuating circumstances
               make dismissal of the citation appropriate in the interest of justice, the
               issuing agency shall cancel the citation. The issuing agency shall
               advise the Finance Officer of the cancellation. The issuing agency or
               the Finance Officer shall mail the results of the initial review to the
               person contesting the citation.

               C.      If the person is dissatisfied with the results of the initial review,
               the person may request an administrative hearing of the violation no
               later than 21 calendar days following the mailing of the results of the
               issuing agency‟s initial review. The request may be made by
               telephone, in writing, or in person. The person requesting an
               administrative hearing shall deposit the amount of the fine with the
               Finance Officer.

               D.     The Finance Officer shall provide a written procedure to allow
               a person to request an administrative hearing without payment of the
               fine upon satisfactory proof of an inability to pay the amount due.
               Notice of this procedure shall be provided to all persons requesting an
               administrative hearing.
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               E.    The administrative hearing shall be held within 90 calendar
               days following the receipt of a request for an administrative hearing.
               The person requesting the hearing may request one continuance, not
               to exceed 21 days.

               10.45.150 The Administrative Hearing Process.

               The administrative hearing process shall include the following:

               A.     The City Manager or his duly authorized representative shall
               hear and consider all relevant evidence, objections or protests, and
               shall receive testimony from the accused violator and any witnesses.

               B.    The person requesting a hearing shall have the choice of a
               hearing by mail or in person.

               C.     If the person requesting a hearing is a minor, that person shall
               be permitted to appear at a hearing or admit responsibility for the
               violation of this Chapter without the necessity of the appointment of a
               guardian. The hearing may proceed against the minor in the same
               manner as against as adult. If it is determined that a minor has
               violated this Chapter, and if the minor cannot pay the fine for the
               violation, the minor‟s parents may be held liable for the amount of the
               fine.

               D.     The administrative hearing shall be conducted in accordance
               with written procedures established by the Finance Officer and
               approved by the City Manager. The hearing shall provide an
               independent, objective, fair, and impartial review of contested
               violations under this Chapter.

               E.     The Police Officer or person who issues a citation may, but
               shall not be required to, participate in an administrative hearing. The
               issuing agency shall not be required to produce any evidence other
               than the citation or copy thereof. The documentation in proper form
               shall be prima facie evidence of the violation.



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               F.      The examiner's decision following the administrative hearing
               may be personally delivered to the person by the examiner or sent by
               first-class mail.

               10.45.160 Payments Collected by Director of Finance.

               Contested charges shall be resolved, fines shall be imposed, and
               payments shall be collected and processed by the Finance Officer.”

     SECTION 2.        AMENDMENT TO CODE. Chapter 10.60 of
the Merced Municipal Code dealing with skateboard parks is hereby deleted.

       SECTION 3.          EFFECTIVE DATE. This Ordinance shall be in full
force and effect thirty (30) days after its adoption.

      SECTION 4.          SEVERABILITY. If any section, subsection,
subdivision, sentence, clause, phrase, or portion of this Ordinance, is for any
reason held to be invalid or unconstitutional by the decision of any court of
competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining
portions of this Ordinance. The City Council hereby declares that it would have
adopted this Ordinance, and each section, subsection, subdivision, sentence, clause,
phrase, or portion thereof, irrespective of the fact that any one or more sections,
subsections, subdivisions, sentences, clauses, phrases, or portions thereof be
declared invalid or unconstitutional.

      SECTION 5.           PUBLICATION. The City Clerk is directed to cause a
copy of this Ordinance to be published in the official newspaper at least once
within fifteen (15) days after its adoption.

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      The foregoing Ordinance was introduced at a regular meeting of the City
Council of the City of Merced on the ____ day of __________, 2002, and was
passed and adopted at a regular meeting of said City Council held on the ____ day
of ___________, 2002, by the following called vote:

AYES:                  Council Members:

NOES:                  Council Members:

ABSTAIN:               Council Members:

ABSENT:                Council Members:

                                                       APPROVED:


                                                       ___________________________
                                                           Mayor

ATTEST:
JAMES G. MARSHALL, CITY CLERK


BY:_____________________________
     Deputy City Clerk


(SEAL)


APPROVED AS TO FORM:


________________________________
     City Attorney




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