A new policy—based on current practice—will help determine how Dormont residents with physical disabilities qualify for reserved accessible parking spaces in front of their homes.
The new policy combines and amends two documents the borough currently uses for these regulations: a policy adopted in 1996, and a section of Borough Code that was amended in 2003.
The changes are part of an effort to update and formalize many of the borough’s policies.
“There’s a lot of stuff out there where we’ve been laboring under the notion that we had a written policy, but maybe we really had several [policies] that needed to be cleaned up and put together, and this one of them,” said Council President Bill McCartney.
Dormont council approved the new policy on Monday by a 7-0 vote.
The major change is that in order for the borough to grant a resident a reserved space, the resident must ask his or her doctor to complete a form from the borough regarding why the space is needed.
In addition, only two reserved spaces will be allowed per block on two-way residential streets, and one reserved space per block on one-way residential streets.
All requests for reserved spaces will be reviewed by the Traffic and Parking Planning Commission before they are approved, and borough manager Jeff Naftal said exceptions will be considered if the commission determines that they are necessary.
Naftal said existing reserved spaces will not be affected by the new policy.
The policy does not affect a resident’s ability to get a placard for his or her vehicle—it only affects a resident’s ability to get a reserved parking space in front of his or her home.
Also, Naftal said, being granted a reserved space does not mean that the resident owns the space. According to state law, he said, anyone who has a placard in the window of their vehicle can park in a designated space.
The new policy is effective as of Monday’s vote by borough council, and will not affect residents who already have a reserved space. It also will not affect residents who applied for a reserved space prior to Jan. 7.
The new policy is posted on the borough’s website as part of the Jan. 7 Agenda Package, Part II. It also is attached to this article as a PDF document.