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Suwanee council OKs application process to request restricting on-street parking

The Suwanee City Council voted Tuesday to approve an application process for residents to request restricting on-street parking. Pictured from left to right are city manager Marty Allen, council member Dan Foster, mayor pro tem Dick Goodman, council member Doug Ireland and council member Beth Hilscher. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen)

The Suwanee City Council voted Tuesday to approve an application process for residents to request restricting on-street parking. Pictured from left to right are city manager Marty Allen, council member Dan Foster, mayor pro tem Dick Goodman, council member Doug Ireland and council member Beth Hilscher. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen)

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The city of Suwanee recognized the volunteer committee for Suwanee Day 2013 during Tuesday night’s city council meeting. (Staff Photo: Deanna Allen)

SUWANEE — An application process allowing residents to petition the city of Suwanee to restrict on-street parking drew criticism from a former city mayor Tuesday night.

Chris Yoder asked the Suwanee City Council to consider changing two provisions in the process before adopting the policy — one requiring 70 percent of affected homeowners to sign a petition and another requiring the signatures to be witnessed.

“I thought it was put there to keep people from challenging the parking regs,” Yoder said. “Getting a petition with 70 percent of people on anything is almost impossible.”

While regulations allow on-street parking in most places within the city, the new policy and application process, which was unanimously approved by the city council, would allow residents to petition the city to consider restricting on-street parking in residential areas. Applications would be considered on a case-by-case basis.

“I think if there’s a strong enough interest to restrict parking, that gives citizens a … process to address it,” council member Beth Holscher said. “I think it’s a solid policy.”

After obtaining 70 percent of homeowners’ signatures, all witnessed, the application would then require a letter of support from the homeowners association, if one exists. A public hearing would then be held during which the council would hear arguments for and against implementing regulations. Following the public hearing, the council would approve or deny the request.

“I think it’s a very fair process because the last thing you want to do is take away somebody’s right, especially a property right, and it can be construed that parking in front of your property is a property right, even though it’s a public right of way, it could be construed that way,” council member Dan Foster said. “So I think it’s a very fair process what’s been put together.”

Also on Tuesday, the city council approved alcohol beverage license for the Outback Steakhouse at 145 Celebration Drive. The application was for a change in licensee and was approved unanimously.

A request for a special use permit to allow a beauty salon at 530 Highland Station Drive was withdrawn by the applicant.

During the city council meeting, events coordinator Amy Doherty recognized sponsors and the volunteer committee for this year’s Suwanee Day.

“We’re honoring the folks that helped make Suwanee Day possible,” she said.