The Marthasville Board of Aldermen has approved an ordinance establishing a comprehensive set of rules for the use of city park facilities.
The rules, designed to protect park areas, provide specific language for the safekeeping of city property as well as for individual activity, putting more teeth into the city’s ability to enforce violations that pose immediate and potential damage to park facilities, citizens and wildlife.
“This is the first comprehensive set of rules we have had for local parks,” said Assistant City Clerk Lisa Irwin, who noted that city leaders are hopeful that the ordinance will eliminate nighttime gatherings of youth and associated mischief and more serious vandalism.
“The ordinance gives law enforcement additional strength in keeping the parks clean and safe and park property protected,” said Irwin.
In addition to limiting use of park facilities to hours between sunrise and sunset, the ordinance prohibits hunting and weapons of any kind on parkland, as well as possession of alcohol and glass containers. The ordinance spells out that damage to trees, shrubbery, natural life and other property is against the law; this includes affixing handbills and other written material to trees and any structure within the park.
The rules also outlaw skateboarding, operation of motor vehicles other than service and emergency vehicles and parking on grassy areas. Camping will be permitted only with prior city permission, and the new ordinance prohibits disposal of trash other than in containers provided for this purpose.
The ordinance states “all areas shall be left in a clean and orderly condition.”
Also spelled out are rules pertaining to dogs and other domestic animals, which the law now states must be on a leash and restricted from playgrounds and from waterways. Owners also must pick up after their pets and have with them “an instrument or container to remove from the park any waste deposited by their animal,” the ordinance states.
Smoking is not allowed in the restrooms or within 10 feet of the playgrounds.