Last Updated on September 13, 2021 by Lawrence Berezin
Wecolme to the NYC rules-laws and regulations
I know the rules-laws when I see them on signs. But where were they born? Likewise, where do I find ’em before I see them on signs, subsequently misunderstand them, and pay a costly parking fine?
The answer lies with the publications from the NYC Council, the Evil Empire, and the NYC Department of Transportation. That is to say, each of these stakeholders plays a huge role in creating the ground rules for:
- Parking in NYC and
- Giving the public notice of their proposed adoption.
–The NYC Council enacts the laws
–The Evil Empire proposes the rules that govern the internal procedures and organization of the Parking Violations Bureau, the manner and time of entering pleas, the conduct of hearings, the amount and manner of payment of penalties, and other purposes of article two-B of the Vehicle and Traffic Law
–The NYC Commissioner of Transportation offers traffic rules applicable to the stopping, standing, and parking of a motor vehicle
The birth of rules-laws
A rule is a “standard or requirement that is set by an NYC agency (Evil Empire or DOT) that affects members of the general public (you and me).”
Meanwhile, rules-laws start as proposals before becoming legitimate parking rules and parking laws that we must obey.
In the same vein, John and Jane Q public are notified of the proposed rules. And are given a chance to voice their opinion.
For example, let’s take the creation of NYC pedestrian plazas. The law was enacted by the NYC Council and looked like this:
THE CITY OF NEW YORK
FOR THE YEAR 2016
Introduced by Council Members Johnson, Garodnick, Lander, Rodriguez, Torres, Chin and
A LOCAL LAW
To amend the administrative code of the city of New York in relation to pedestrian plazas.
Be it enacted by the Council as follows:
The Body of the Law
Section 1. Declaration of legislative intent and findings.
a. The Council finds and declares
that as public amenities, pedestrian plazas enhance the quality of life in New York City and help to
attract tourism by providing a place for community gathering, entertainment, and cultural events,
recreation, and active and passive enjoyment of the unique urban spaces in this City. However,
there is a need to coordinate the wide variety of sometimes conflicting civic and commercial uses
of these finite spaces, as well as to create an ambiance that helps enrich local communities and
attract tourists, who are vital to the City’s economy and foster economic development.
Among other concerns, some pedestrian plazas face high levels of pedestrian congestion and/or activity
that interfere with residents’ and tourists’ ability to enjoy these spaces and their unique qualities.
b. The Council finds that it is necessary and appropriate to confer authority on the New
York City Department of Transportation to promulgate reasonable time, place, and manner
regulations governing pedestrian plazas to manage the competing uses of finite public
space. Given the wide diversity of pedestrian plazas, this law will allow the Department to draft
both uniform pedestrian plaza rules and rules appropriately tailored to individual pedestrian plazas
and the communities they serve.
Further, it is necessary and appropriate to authorize the Department of Transportation to designate and remove the designation of plazas, with all existing plazas grandfathered in, and for an agency or office designated by the Mayor to promulgate rules establishing a process for the issuance of permits for events within pedestrian plazas and about the management of pedestrian plaza operations during events.
[Here’s where you’ll find the law in the NYC Administrative Code at § 19-157 Pedestrian plazas_scroll to section 157]
The Pedestrian Plaza Law granted permission to the Commissioner of the DOT to enact rules
Here is an interesting letter from the NYC Bar written by Katharine Bodde, Chair, Sex & Law Committee, objecting to some proposed rules.
Here’s the document informing that the rules-laws were adopted after proper notice and comment.
Resources worth checking out
-Parking Rules NYC. Title 34: Department of Transportation
The Evil Empire-Rules_Title 19 Chapter 34
–Politico: “DOT proposes new regulations for pedestrian plazas.”
-DOT Website: Pedestrian Plaza Program
–Administrative Code (parking laws)
–Rules (contains proposed rules)
“Curbed NYC”-Map and information about every pedestrian plaza
A proposed parking law currently pending before the NYC Council
Here’s what the law looks like:
A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to prohibiting the use of a vehicle to reserve a parking space and prohibiting the continuous parking of a vehicle in the same location for more than five consecutive days
Be it enacted by the Council as follows:
Section 1. Subchapter 2 of chapter 1 of title 19 of the administrative code of the city of New York is amended by adding a new section 19-175.8 to read as follows:
§ 19-175.8 Restrictions on parking.
a. Prohibiting the use of a vehicle to reserve a parking space.
Notwithstanding any rule or regulation to the contrary, a person shall not use a vehicle to reserve or attempt to reserve a parking space or prevent a vehicle from parking on a public street, except as otherwise permitted by law.
A person found to be in violation of this subdivision shall be liable for a civil penalty of $95 for each violation.
b. Prohibiting the parking of a vehicle for more than five consecutive days. When parking is not otherwise restricted, a person shall not continuously park a vehicle in the same location on a public street or roadway in any area, including a residential area, for more than five consecutive days.
c. Outreach. Beginning no later than the effective date of this local law, and continuing for 90 days thereafter, the commissioner, in collaboration with relevant agencies and relevant stakeholders, shall conduct culturally appropriate outreach in the designated citywide languages, as defined in section 23-1101, to alert vehicle owners and relevant stakeholders to the parking restrictions established by subdivisions a and b. Such outreach shall include, but need not be limited to, posting information on relevant agency websites.
The commissioner shall promulgate rules necessary and appropriate to the administration of this section. § 2.
This local law takes effect 90 days after it becomes law, except that the commissioner of transportation shall take such measures as are necessary for the implementation of this local law, including the promulgation of rules, before such date.
The proposed law was introduced on September 9, 2021. And it was referred to the Transportation Committee for review. Notice of committee hearings will be given where any interested party may present testimony. Or, the proposed law may be ignored and end up in the home for old, ignored, proposed laws that never saw the light of day.
If the proposed law comes up for a vote and is passed, it will be sent to the Mayor for his signature. If it is signed, the law will end up in the NYC Administrative Code, and a rule will be promulgated by the Commissioner and published in the NYC Rules. Finally, you will find it in R. 4-08
NYC parking rules and laws are important to learn. Certainly, the rules are displayed on numerous traffic signs throughout our fair city. I love checking out the proposed laws on the NYC Council Website (beta). It can’t hurt understanding these costly commands before you meet up with them curbside.
For example, who amongst us was confused by the “Truck Loading Only” rule? However, it was born because they redesigned all the parking signs to clarify and crystalize their meaning. However, the written rule conflicted with the rule displayed on the redesigned parking sign.
The redesigned sign with the “Truck Loading Only” verbiage attempted to make the parking command easier to understand. But, guess what? It didn’t. The original rule, 4-08(k)(2), restricted parking to trucks loading or unloading. The original, confusing wording was,
“Where a posted sign reads “No Standing Except Trucks Loading and Unloading,” no vehicle except a commercial vehicle or a service vehicle as defined in §4-01(b) of these rules, may stand or park in that area, for the purpose of expeditiously making pickups, deliveries or service calls, and except that in the area from 35th St. to 41st St., Avenue of the Americas to 8th Avenue, inclusive, in the Borough of Manhattan, between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., no vehicle except a truck as defined in §4-13(a)(1) of these rules may stand or park for the purpose of expeditiously making pickups, deliveries, or service calls.”
However, the stakeholders eliminated the verbiage, “No Standing Except Trucks Loading and Unloading.” on the redesigned signs And replaced it with “Trucks loading only.”
But, they didn’t change the language in the written rule that required the parking sign to specifically display the language, “No standing except trucks loading and unloading.”
When they finaly realized the costly faux pas, their choice was to either to replace all the truck loading only parking signs or to amend the rule and add, “or Trucks loading only,” They decided to simply amend the rule,
Knowledge is power. Please pay attention to the birth and language in a parking rule of law. You will save your hard-earned dough if you do.