News

Council may put curbs on vehicle dwellers

Vote to fund Terra Bella safe parking site could pave way for new restrictions

Over the last couple of years, a political debate has played out in Mountain View over whether to take a tougher stance toward the hundreds of people living in their vehicles. More than any other issue, City Council members say they have heard a surge of complaints from frustrated residents who are fed up with the sight of squalid motor homes and trailers along the streets.

Last spring, a thin majority on the council rejected calls to take stricter measures such as parking restrictions, saying it would only shoo the problem elsewhere. Mountain View needs to hold off a little longer, at least until the homeless population has another viable place to go, they argued.

One potential alternative materialized at the Tuesday, Oct. 9, council meeting. A proposal by the affordable housing nonprofit Palo Alto Housing would temporarily use one of its vacant lots as a safe parking site for people living out of vehicles. The location at 1020 Terra Bella Ave. is intended for affordable housing, but that project is expected to take years to develop. In the meantime, the site reportedly has enough space to host up to 11 vehicles.

In a 5-2 vote, with Mayor Lenny Siegel and Councilwoman Pat Showalter dissenting, the council gave tentative approval for spending an estimated $230,000 to help establish the Terra Bella site as a safe parking location. However, the majority also directed the city to investigate putting parking restrictions on inhabited vehicles around town, widening the dispute over what to do about the larger homeless issue in the city.

It was small step to address the roughly 300 inhabited vehicles on Mountain View's streets, yet still a significant one, said Amber Stime, a coordinator with the Lots of Love nonprofit. Since April, her group has been recruiting local churches to use their lots as safe parking sites for vehicle dwellers. Progress has been slow: Only two churches have signed up, and only nine vehicles could be taken in, she said. Yet, she chalked it up as a success.

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"For those floating from parking lot to parking lot, to have one place to stay is a big deal," she said. "What I hear from tenants is this gives them a sense of belonging, even if it's just for a short time."

By taking on the Terra Bella site, Lots of Love would double its capacity, but it is expected to cost about $78,000 to clear the site and install safety equipment, fencing and electrical service. On top of that, the city would also need to provide up to $150,000 per year for garbage, septic dumping and security services. City staff said they would return with clearer cost figures at a future meeting.

Council members said they were willing to stomach those costs, although they suggested that other cities ought to contribute money. The bigger issue, said Councilwoman Lisa Matichak, is Mountain View residents are letting it be known "loud and clear" that something has to be done about the inhabited motor homes and RVs across the city. As part of the motion, she proposed the city look at some kind of parking restrictions to prevent permanent car encampments.

"We want to be compassionate and help people, but this is becoming a public health and safety concern," she said. "Now that some time has passed, it's time to talk about this."

Fewer members of the public turned up to comment on the issue, when compared to past meetings, but some familiar concerns were expressed. While other cities were imposing parking restrictions on people living out of their vehicles, Mountain View seemed to be making it easier, pointed out resident Leslie Murdock.

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"If Mountain View does this, it just sucks more RVs into the city." he said. "If (other cities) don't step up, I don't see why Mountain View should."

Councilman John McAlister described parking restrictions as a "tough love" lesson for people living out of their vehicles when they might easily be able to reside elsewhere. In particular, he wanted restrictions to keep car campers away from city parks.

"Is living in this way the best for your family, instead of finding some other place that's affordable where you can get a higher quality of life?" he said.

At a March meeting, the City Council had discussed potential parking restrictions, including forcing people living out of their vehicles to register with the city, but the idea was rejected in a 3-4 vote.

At Tuesday's meeting, most council members who opposed that past attempt were incensed by the new move to put restrictions on people living out of vehicles. Siegel scoffed at the irony of "tough love" lessons for the destitute coming from someone in a privileged position.

"This attitude, that people lack the moral fortitude compared to those of us who were lucky to buy our homes in 1979, is just barking up the wrong tree," he said. "I know some people think that living in a van is a lifestyle choice, but people are doing this for the same reasons as the rest of us: They're working here, they're going to school here."

Councilman Ken Rosenberg said he was delighted to vote for the safe parking program, even going so far as to draw comparisons to the epilogue of "Schindler's List." But he scolded his colleagues for thinking their constituents didn't include the homeless.

"When I hear concerns about 'quality of life,' it's only for the residents who live in a home," he said. "We owe it to our residents to protect them, all of them."

However, five members of the City Council decided it was at least worth investigating some sort of parking restrictions. Despite his protests, Rosenberg voted with the majority.

City staff members said they could return with proposals for parking restrictions at a council meeting sometime in early 2019.

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Council may put curbs on vehicle dwellers

Vote to fund Terra Bella safe parking site could pave way for new restrictions

by / Mountain View Voice

Uploaded: Thu, Oct 11, 2018, 11:09 am

Over the last couple of years, a political debate has played out in Mountain View over whether to take a tougher stance toward the hundreds of people living in their vehicles. More than any other issue, City Council members say they have heard a surge of complaints from frustrated residents who are fed up with the sight of squalid motor homes and trailers along the streets.

Last spring, a thin majority on the council rejected calls to take stricter measures such as parking restrictions, saying it would only shoo the problem elsewhere. Mountain View needs to hold off a little longer, at least until the homeless population has another viable place to go, they argued.

One potential alternative materialized at the Tuesday, Oct. 9, council meeting. A proposal by the affordable housing nonprofit Palo Alto Housing would temporarily use one of its vacant lots as a safe parking site for people living out of vehicles. The location at 1020 Terra Bella Ave. is intended for affordable housing, but that project is expected to take years to develop. In the meantime, the site reportedly has enough space to host up to 11 vehicles.

In a 5-2 vote, with Mayor Lenny Siegel and Councilwoman Pat Showalter dissenting, the council gave tentative approval for spending an estimated $230,000 to help establish the Terra Bella site as a safe parking location. However, the majority also directed the city to investigate putting parking restrictions on inhabited vehicles around town, widening the dispute over what to do about the larger homeless issue in the city.

It was small step to address the roughly 300 inhabited vehicles on Mountain View's streets, yet still a significant one, said Amber Stime, a coordinator with the Lots of Love nonprofit. Since April, her group has been recruiting local churches to use their lots as safe parking sites for vehicle dwellers. Progress has been slow: Only two churches have signed up, and only nine vehicles could be taken in, she said. Yet, she chalked it up as a success.

"For those floating from parking lot to parking lot, to have one place to stay is a big deal," she said. "What I hear from tenants is this gives them a sense of belonging, even if it's just for a short time."

By taking on the Terra Bella site, Lots of Love would double its capacity, but it is expected to cost about $78,000 to clear the site and install safety equipment, fencing and electrical service. On top of that, the city would also need to provide up to $150,000 per year for garbage, septic dumping and security services. City staff said they would return with clearer cost figures at a future meeting.

Council members said they were willing to stomach those costs, although they suggested that other cities ought to contribute money. The bigger issue, said Councilwoman Lisa Matichak, is Mountain View residents are letting it be known "loud and clear" that something has to be done about the inhabited motor homes and RVs across the city. As part of the motion, she proposed the city look at some kind of parking restrictions to prevent permanent car encampments.

"We want to be compassionate and help people, but this is becoming a public health and safety concern," she said. "Now that some time has passed, it's time to talk about this."

Fewer members of the public turned up to comment on the issue, when compared to past meetings, but some familiar concerns were expressed. While other cities were imposing parking restrictions on people living out of their vehicles, Mountain View seemed to be making it easier, pointed out resident Leslie Murdock.

"If Mountain View does this, it just sucks more RVs into the city." he said. "If (other cities) don't step up, I don't see why Mountain View should."

Councilman John McAlister described parking restrictions as a "tough love" lesson for people living out of their vehicles when they might easily be able to reside elsewhere. In particular, he wanted restrictions to keep car campers away from city parks.

"Is living in this way the best for your family, instead of finding some other place that's affordable where you can get a higher quality of life?" he said.

At a March meeting, the City Council had discussed potential parking restrictions, including forcing people living out of their vehicles to register with the city, but the idea was rejected in a 3-4 vote.

At Tuesday's meeting, most council members who opposed that past attempt were incensed by the new move to put restrictions on people living out of vehicles. Siegel scoffed at the irony of "tough love" lessons for the destitute coming from someone in a privileged position.

"This attitude, that people lack the moral fortitude compared to those of us who were lucky to buy our homes in 1979, is just barking up the wrong tree," he said. "I know some people think that living in a van is a lifestyle choice, but people are doing this for the same reasons as the rest of us: They're working here, they're going to school here."

Councilman Ken Rosenberg said he was delighted to vote for the safe parking program, even going so far as to draw comparisons to the epilogue of "Schindler's List." But he scolded his colleagues for thinking their constituents didn't include the homeless.

"When I hear concerns about 'quality of life,' it's only for the residents who live in a home," he said. "We owe it to our residents to protect them, all of them."

However, five members of the City Council decided it was at least worth investigating some sort of parking restrictions. Despite his protests, Rosenberg voted with the majority.

City staff members said they could return with proposals for parking restrictions at a council meeting sometime in early 2019.

Comments

Enforce the law
Sylvan Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 11:58 am
Enforce the law, Sylvan Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 11:58 am
99 people like this

City Council members can have feelings towards the RV dwellers.
City Council members can help the RV dwellers by letting them stay at their homes.
City Council members cannot let the RV dwellers to brake the city laws.
City Council members need to enforce the city code:
MVCO 19.72- Vehicles Parked over 72 hours
All vehicles within city limits are required to move at least 1000 feet (approximately two-tenths of a mile) every 72 hours. If a car is parked in the same location, on a public road, for more than 72 hours, it will be considered in violation of city code and the owner will be cited and the vehicle possibly towed. If you have a non-operable vehicle, or if you own a vehicle that is leaking fluids or sewage that is parked on a public road, you must tow it to a repair facility or your home.


This needs to be done
Rex Manor
on Oct 11, 2018 at 1:00 pm
This needs to be done, Rex Manor
on Oct 11, 2018 at 1:00 pm
91 people like this

I'm sorry but it's not fair to *anyone* to allow RV dwellers with no water or sewage services to live on the streets, especially near parks. At the very least can we make Rengstorff Park a safe place for kids again? It's out of hand. I do have compassion for the RV dwellers but the current approach is a lose-lose.


Needs to be city wide
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 1:26 pm
Needs to be city wide, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 1:26 pm
63 people like this

Pushing them away from parks but allowing them elsewhere? That's like squashing a 1/2 inflated balloon, they'll just bubble out somewhere else. What recourse to we have if suddenly one morning they set up shop in front of my house? Why won't they DO something for the ENORMOUSLY vast majority of residents who are affected by this on a daily basis, in one negative way or another.
I'd say this is easily the biggest quality of life issue in MV right now and the council seems to be kicking the can, or just nibbling at the issue...11 spots, but you're not forced to go there. Great.


Brian
Shoreline West
on Oct 11, 2018 at 1:32 pm
Brian, Shoreline West
on Oct 11, 2018 at 1:32 pm
73 people like this

The article states that the Terra Bella site has space for up to 11 vehicles. The article also states that the city would have to pay up to $150,000 per year for garbage, septic dumping and security services. So, the city would be paying nearly $14,000 per vehicle per year to support people who can't otherwise afford to live in Mountain View. It seems like a terrible deal for my co-workers who drive in to work from South San Jose and Pleasanton, who live that far away because they can't afford to live here. I wonder if the city will subsidize them so that they can move closer to work. Hey, it'll cut down on greenhouse gas emissions by reducing commutes.


William Hitchens
Registered user
Waverly Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:29 pm
William Hitchens, Waverly Park
Registered user
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:29 pm
81 people like this

Other than the squalor and taking up parking spaces, my biggest beef is when RV's park on major thoroughfares where they block bicycle lanes needed to keep bicyclists safe during rush hour. A perfect example is Shoreline between El Camino Real and Central Expressway. They definitely create a safety issue on major thoroughfares.


Mtn View Workers do not HAVE in Mtn View.
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:32 pm
Mtn View Workers do not HAVE in Mtn View., Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:32 pm
57 people like this

Just because someone is employed in Mountain View they do not HAVE to live within City limits. That expectation is impossible to meet and is completely unrealistic. Mountain View has a population of 80,000 compared to San Jose with One Million+, there is no way Mountain View can house everyone who works here There are areas of San Jose far more affordable than Mountain View, you don't need to move to Tracy.


Rodger
Sylvan Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:36 pm
Rodger, Sylvan Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:36 pm
25 people like this

Parking on the streets and living there must be stopped.
People who are super poor should be provided a place to park with services
People who have jobs and are using trailers as week day rooms to avoid driving home need to be towed away.


Move the RV's to OMV and Grant Rd neighborhoods
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:39 pm
Move the RV's to OMV and Grant Rd neighborhoods, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:39 pm
54 people like this

Next step will be allowing tents on city side walks as they have in San Francisco. While the compassion of Showalter and Siegel is admirable the fact is both live in the more affluent areas of Mtn View with NO RV's, they need to walk the talk, how about lining up those RV's throughout Old Mountain View and the areas off of Grant Road rather than establish an apartheid approach, out of sight, out of mind. Clearly that comment is snarky and sarcastic, but it was meant to be. Apologies.


RoxieK
Slater
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:44 pm
RoxieK, Slater
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:44 pm
47 people like this

@enforce the law ... I hear you. I challenge anyone who gets a parking ticket in Mtn View to fight it in court. There is no way the city can enforce a downtown parking violation if they refuse to enforce MVCO 19.72. Selective enforcement sounds a lot like discrimination. Park as long as you like or wherever you want, people. Park on sidewalks, block driveways, what the heck, why not double park wherever you want. The sky's the limit. BTW ... I'd love to live in Woodside; hmmm, maybe I'll get an RV ...

Enough is enough.


Council feels the heat from voters!
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:48 pm
Council feels the heat from voters!, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:48 pm
65 people like this

Yea,,,, If an election would not be just a few weeks away, we all know that council would not be doing anything about this. Be very afraid once the election is over they will revert back to business as usual.

Keep people out who support the RV's, like,
Siegel
Rameriz.


Wondering
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:52 pm
Wondering, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:52 pm
60 people like this

I am wondering why the woman in the picture is holding an IPhone that I cannot afford and I work everyday and pay rent on a small apt. You can get a much more modest phone for free at Safelink with no monthly fees. How does she pay for the monthly use fee? I'm not trying to be nasty, I'm trying to be realistic. People spend their money on what is important to them. I work 2 jobs and freelance too. I don't need and can't afford a fancy phone, so I don't have one. You can get free food, help with utilities and a lot of other assistance if you want it. I assume she would qualify if she is so poor she's living in her van. I don't get it. I'd work 5 jobs before I would live in my car and before you say it - I am partially disabled, so don't tell me she can't work. I am also wondering why this area for 11 cars is going "to take years to build". Why can't that timeline be stepped up? I say park the RV's in front of the mayor's house and we'll see action REAL SOON!


Have Compassion
Sylvan Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:57 pm
Have Compassion, Sylvan Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 2:57 pm
16 people like this

I just got a ride home this morning from a Lyft driver in a compact car. I asked him about his life and after much give & take I learned that he lives in Sacramento where he can afford a 1 br apt, but works driving for Lyft 5 days a week, usually in San Francisco, but in Mountain View today because a SF ride brought him here yesterday. He drives here because he cannot get steady work in Sacramento. I asked him where he stays during the week and he said he sleeps in his car - his compact car. I don't know why all the talk is only about RV's which might be owned by people who could afford to rent an apt in another part of the country. It seems to me that unless you go to an unsafe area in San Jose, it is impossible to live anywhere within a 1.5 hour drive of here on a low income. Expecting someone to commute by car (since he needs it for work) from Sacramento seems pretty unreasonable. I wish people had more compassion toward people who live out of their cars. I'm so saddened by the attitudes I see on this page. And if I had a space to share with him, I would, but I live in a mobile home park with no place to park an extra vehicle and no extra space in my home.


mvresident2003
Registered user
Monta Loma
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:18 pm
mvresident2003, Monta Loma
Registered user
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:18 pm
45 people like this

How is it even remotely compassionate to encourage and/or support people living in RVs? That is just a complete and total mis-placed sense of social justice! People need to be taught and guided into making SMART choices with their lives. And sometimes smart means tough. Sometimes smart means doing the hard thing.


Alan
Old Mountain View
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:18 pm
Alan, Old Mountain View
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:18 pm
34 people like this

Also see MVCC 19.71 which is maybe the most disregarded law in the city:
"It shall be unlawful for the owner or driver of any vehicle to allow such vehicle to remain standing upon any street or alley in the city for a period of time longer than one hour between the hours of 2:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. without a permit therefor"

Does anybody get one of these permits to park in front of their house?


Terra Bella Neighborhood
Rex Manor
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:21 pm
Terra Bella Neighborhood, Rex Manor
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:21 pm
55 people like this

Ask how much the city has spent on trying to cater to these people, in the millions!!! And now this, $150K/yr, come on-too much. Some friends actually moved to Fremont/Hayward/San Jose and are actually working in Mountain View. Why can't this RV dwellers do this? Have a better quality of life. Because the City Council allows them. There is something definitely wrong here. Why cater to the few? Why is the city council adhering to the adage that the needs of the few outweigh the needs of the many. Shouldn't be that way. Am getting tired of all the RV's. Just replace all the council members!!! Replace Showalter, Ramirez, Siegel.


Concerned MVer
Shoreline West
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:33 pm
Concerned MVer, Shoreline West
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:33 pm
45 people like this

The great news is that we, as residents can have a voice in a few weeks.

Coming this November, we can vote out the councilperson who is the big problem, namely, Pat Showalter. I certainly will be voting Ms. Showater OUT this November, I hope you will follow so that we can have reasonable representation in MV again.



@Concerned MVer
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:39 pm
@Concerned MVer, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:39 pm
75 people like this

May I ask why you only and always say vote out Showalter?
Siegel is right there with Showalter as is candidate Rameriz.

Why do you not mention them as well?

If both Siegel and Rameriz are on the city council, nothing changes.

Keep them all off the council!


Robyn
another community
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:50 pm
Robyn, another community
on Oct 11, 2018 at 3:50 pm
31 people like this

Enforce the laws that already exist. We deserve no less.


littledog
Old Mountain View
on Oct 11, 2018 at 4:27 pm
littledog, Old Mountain View
on Oct 11, 2018 at 4:27 pm
29 people like this

I live near the fire department along with the Shoreline. From my observation, it becomes very dangerous for everyone now:
- fire tracks need to pull out the fire station for some maintenance works, RVs took their spaces, and this is especially true for they have less visibility to pull their trucks out.
- The Shoreline is the main bike route for many workers to their offices in the north part of Shoreline, there is no bike lane now.
- Sometimes, I noticed the RV's owner's body is half-way stick outside of RV during their repair, it was really dangerous.

Maybe RV can stay away from police and fire departments to allow their vehicles easy to respond to emergencies.


Lynn Wood
North Whisman
on Oct 11, 2018 at 4:41 pm
Lynn Wood, North Whisman
on Oct 11, 2018 at 4:41 pm
11 people like this

Mmm tough love. What, "have you thought about, like, getting a better job and not being poor?" I'm sure people sleeping in their cars haven't heard that one. Let's try it!


Angry voter
Sylvan Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 5:19 pm
Angry voter, Sylvan Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 5:19 pm
60 people like this

Vote out SIEGAL and SHOWALTER and do not vote for candidate RAMIREZ as they support unlimited RV's. Siegel wants to transform Shoreline into a massive RV encampment. When that fills up what is next? Cuesta Park Annex and all the other parks are vulnerable. Time to get rid of them now before it gets worse!


Drain
Jackson Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 7:42 pm
Drain , Jackson Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 7:42 pm
21 people like this

Thank you Angry Voter

Great summary that I’ll follow


Reside
Stierlin Estates
on Oct 11, 2018 at 9:21 pm
Reside, Stierlin Estates
on Oct 11, 2018 at 9:21 pm
32 people like this

Neighbors look at this, dump more of these RV's into our neighborhood. We already have plenty of them on Terra Bella, San Rafael, Linda Vista ...
These 11 on a lot will multiply on the surrounding streets. City council enough is enough, do not dump the problem into our neighborhood. It's time to enforce the parking rule. Oh and where will the dope shops go, maybe just next door to this since its a good area for that too.


Billy Bob
Bailey Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 9:42 pm
Billy Bob, Bailey Park
on Oct 11, 2018 at 9:42 pm
35 people like this

Siegel and Showalter are the problem clearly PLEASE VOTE THEM OUT THE TIME TO ACT IS NOW


cyclist
another community
on Oct 11, 2018 at 10:33 pm
cyclist, another community
on Oct 11, 2018 at 10:33 pm
11 people like this

It would be nice if the RVs weren't in the bike lane, but it would be even nicer if people didn't swerve into the bike lanes randomly while driving, and didn't park multiple cars in the street every day because their garage is full of stuff, etc. Be the change you want to see :)


Diablo
Monta Loma
on Oct 11, 2018 at 10:33 pm
Diablo , Monta Loma
on Oct 11, 2018 at 10:33 pm
41 people like this

During the candidates forum I attended, John Inks spoke out forcefully about stopping the incentives for RV's to park on the streets. He got my vote right there. The other thing I realized later was that he can be a partial counter balance to what is, imo, an extreme left-leaning council.


robstar
Registered user
Willowgate
on Oct 11, 2018 at 10:50 pm
robstar, Willowgate
Registered user
on Oct 11, 2018 at 10:50 pm
7 people like this

Tough love would be repealing Prop 13 ;)


SLB
Rex Manor
on Oct 11, 2018 at 11:00 pm
SLB, Rex Manor
on Oct 11, 2018 at 11:00 pm
5 people like this

I think parking with RV services should be offered for a reasonable price to cover costs. That way the workers who no longer can afford rent can have a place to live close in rather than hours of commuting and the trouble makers have to go bye-bye.


Member
Monta Loma
on Oct 12, 2018 at 7:19 am
Member , Monta Loma
on Oct 12, 2018 at 7:19 am
32 people like this

Vote them out
This is total bs
Enforce the law
Remove all RVs
Total BS about ‘compassion’ there are many more affordable places to live in the US if you elected to not work in a field that pays a higher wage.
My View is becoming a magnet for crap, are we going to be paying $185k a year like SF to clean up human feces on the streets too? Because this is the direction we are headed.
I don’t want to lay $150k for others poor choices. I’ve been working since 8 all through high school college night and weekend school and didn’t take on stupid loans I could afford. I save and invested and worked until I could make the investment here as I EARNED it.
So no I am NOT empathetic to all the folks who made the decisions leading to skirting the law and living in RVs
ENFORCE THE LAW and vote them out!

All RVS GONE MAKE MT VIEW HALF DECENT AGAIN
As stands it is going to become the toilet of the peninsula


SCParent
Registered user
Cuesta Park
on Oct 12, 2018 at 7:19 am
SCParent, Cuesta Park
Registered user
on Oct 12, 2018 at 7:19 am
36 people like this

Why should the city provide these services for free? Charge the RV dwellers who would receive electrical and security service from the proposed program. And, then enforce a new ordinance that makes it illegal to park any vehicle over 6 ft high on any city streets for more than a 2 days. Problem solved. No RVs on the street and the city isn't footing the bill to provide services to freeloaders.


This is how it started in SF
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 7:43 am
This is how it started in SF, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 7:43 am
36 people like this

Do-nothing politicians, by doing nothing, opened the doors for the influx of street trash you now see.
I could have been stopped, it can still be fixed, and it can be prevented from happening in MV if we demand ACTION!
Enforce the law!


LOL
North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 8:54 am
LOL, North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 8:54 am
1 person likes this

No, it started in SF because they didn't build enough houses for people to live in, which is something our fair cities have in common.


Permit parking
Registered user
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 9:11 am
Permit parking, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
Registered user
on Oct 12, 2018 at 9:11 am
40 people like this

If the ordinance already exists prohibiting parking on the street between 2:00am and 6:00am except by permit then the city needs to start issuing permits to legal residents for parking. Violators should be towed. To all those feeling empathy is in order, what you’re ignoring is that MV isn’t just taking care of “it’s own”. MV has become a magnet for vehicle dwellers from other cities to move to. It needs to stop before we become SF.


LOL
North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 9:21 am
LOL, North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 9:21 am
4 people like this

"Our own" is the people that reside here. Should we Build The Wall to keep out outsiders? Should you need a birth certificate in Mountain View in order to be considered "our own"? The distance between you all and Donald Trump is really much smaller than you like to pretend.


Our Town: just semantics
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 10:08 am
Our Town: just semantics, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 10:08 am
32 people like this

Reside here but obey the laws, especially the new ones coming your way.
Only a matter of time now.


LOL
North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 10:19 am
LOL, North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 10:19 am
2 people like this

Wow, now threatening people. A wonderful community you look to build. Tell me, how many laws have you broken? I'm sure you've at least exceeded the speed limit. Does that make you not one of "our own"? Or is the dedication to law and order only applied to some of our residents?


Yes
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 12:26 pm
Yes , Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 12:26 pm
24 people like this

Sunnyvale has things under control don't they? That should be easy to mirror.
When it was a few behind the store it wasn't too bad but now it's gotten increasingly worse each passing year. Laws work when enforced. It's simply gotten out of hand without the enforcement of laws that were created for a reason. We're now attracting the otherwise transient RVs into MV and so the snowball grows.


LOL
North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 12:28 pm
LOL, North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 12:28 pm
2 people like this

For everyone "concerned", if we had enough houses for people, we wouldn't have anyone in our city living in vehicles. Build more houses, don't punish the poor even more for our inability to respond to a housing crisis.


Reader
another community
on Oct 12, 2018 at 12:29 pm
Reader, another community
on Oct 12, 2018 at 12:29 pm
21 people like this

Palo Alto and Mountain View have out put the welcome mat to vehicle dwellers from all over the state. Come to Palo Alto! Come to Mountain View and live the good life! I am disgusted every time I drive down El Camino in front of Stanford and drive past two miles of bumper to bumper RV's parked on the side of the street. This is so out of control. PA and MV need to require permits for street parking.


sophie
another community
on Oct 12, 2018 at 12:43 pm
sophie, another community
on Oct 12, 2018 at 12:43 pm
24 people like this

72 hour parking is strictly enforced in our community with towing company actively towing neighbors' cars, how come city of Mountain View decides to give a break to RV dwellers most of whom are violating 72 hour parking rule and causes more hazards by blocking the bicycle lane, constantly occupying public roads, unhygienic wastes dump, and other illegal activities. If anyone serving in city council cares more about those RV dwellers than Mountain View residents, they should resign.


RV parking SNAFU
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 1:03 pm
RV parking SNAFU, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Oct 12, 2018 at 1:03 pm
20 people like this

RV 72 hour parking enforcement. Situation normal, all fooked up.

MVPD was told to stand down by MVCC, unless there was a RV public safety issue. MVPD is perfectly capable of enforcing the 72 parking ordinance. Extra effort would be required to enforce. CSO's with a piece of chalk cannot effectively enforce this ordinance. CSO's are great with 2, 3, 5 hr violations. CSO's just need to return the same day. And yes, people wipe the chalk off their passenger vehicles as well. So long as chalk is the enforcement tool, enforcement is difficult for all types of vehicles. Being told to stand down is a wholly different matter, for which Lenny, Pat and other MVCC members are responsible for our current situation. Let's look enforcement.

MVPD has one part time person to handle 72 hour parking violations (better known as abandoned passenger vehicles). Citizens call in, passenger vehicle is tagged and 72 hours later, the car could be towed. The city has an agreement with a towing company and no money is exchanged. The owner picks up his vehicle after paying hundreds of dollars in fees and fines. Still a good deal for the towing company because most offenders want to get their car back, even if it costs $500.00 or more, because in most cases, the car is worth more than the tow, fine and storage. It's a win/win for the towing company and the city. Only the offender pays, as it should be.

72 hour parking enforcement is a entirely different situation for RV's. MVCC tells MVPD to selectively (not enforce) the 72 hour parking ordinance for RV's (social justice optics look good, although misguided.) Towing companies want their money UP FRONT, paid by the city, to tow RV's. Towing companies want a lot of money for good reason. The towing companies don't really want the RV's because they end up abandoned and sitting forever in their yard. It costs the city a minimum of $3500.00 or more to tow a RV (why?, it just does, special wreckers, special crews, increased liability, hazardous materials, possibility of abandonment, no chance of resale to recoup monies, etc). When a RV owner considers that it may cost $5000.00 to $10,000.00 or more to get their RV back, boom, the RV's become abandoned. It then costs the towing more money to haul off to a scrap yard to recycle. It's a loss for taxpayers, taxpayers pay the minimum $3500.00 towing fee. It's a loss for the towing company regarding storage and disposal. It's a loss for police resources monitoring the tow, and it's a loss the renter/owner of the RV.

Selective enforcement is not illegal, but disappointing to most. Most consider MVPD at fault. Clearly that is not the case.

Residents can petition the city, block by block, to get signage posted. Petition requires need a majority of the block to sign off. The signs might say "No Overnight Parking" or "No Vehicles over 6ft high". Then it should be simply a phone call for enforcement, ticket first, tow after 72 hours. Having to call the abandoned vehicle department to get the process started (because no signs are posted) would take a minimum of 72 hours and more likely 144 hours for action, if any! Signage is the way to go. If you happen to live on a zoned commercial street versus residential street, the rules may be different regarding petitioning and posting signs. You would need to do your own due diligence.

Find out if your council member supports signage on residential blocks before the election.


LOL
North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 1:06 pm
LOL, North Whisman
on Oct 12, 2018 at 1:06 pm
6 people like this

What's with the right-wing obsession with "stand down" orders? RVs are the next Benghazi! If only they'd unleash our boys in blue, we'd have the fascist police state the right so desperately desires.


MtvResident
Registered user
Cuesta Park
on Oct 12, 2018 at 2:08 pm
MtvResident, Cuesta Park
Registered user
on Oct 12, 2018 at 2:08 pm
39 people like this

Not enforcing Rv parking rules is complete bs and needs to stop. Does someone have a summary of where each city council candidate stands on this issue? Will be helpful when filling out the November ballot.


JPP
Registered user
Cuesta Park
on Oct 12, 2018 at 7:08 pm
JPP, Cuesta Park
Registered user
on Oct 12, 2018 at 7:08 pm
44 people like this

Palo Alto, Los Altos and Sunnyvale have made efforts to change the street signs so that they don't have this ugly eye sore along their streets. So where are these RV people going? MOUNTAIN VIEW. People living in RVs can park in front of the homes of the Council. VOTE THESE COUNCIL MEMBERS OUT OF OFFICE IMMEDIATELY. The rows of RVs on the streets devalue properties and property owners should care. The RV dwellers I spoke with, simply don't want to commute from San Jose or elsewhere. Some just want to save money. They are NOT HOMELESS.
Perhaps some genuinely are, but we spoke with 12 RV dwellers along MV streets.


JPP
Registered user
Cuesta Park
on Oct 14, 2018 at 12:03 pm
JPP, Cuesta Park
Registered user
on Oct 14, 2018 at 12:03 pm
36 people like this

My spouse , family and I , will vote the current council members out this November


MtvResident
Registered user
Cuesta Park
on Oct 14, 2018 at 3:54 pm
MtvResident, Cuesta Park
Registered user
on Oct 14, 2018 at 3:54 pm
31 people like this

Instead of spending $230,000 in tax dollars on new RV parking space, the city council should use the money to start towing and impounding RVs. Even at $3,500 per tow (per the comment above) it would remove 65 vehicles and have an immediate positive impact in our community. It would also be a deterrent and likely result in substantially all RVs being removed from our streets very quickly.


MtvResident
Registered user
Cuesta Park
on Oct 14, 2018 at 7:07 pm
MtvResident, Cuesta Park
Registered user
on Oct 14, 2018 at 7:07 pm
32 people like this

Voter guide:
After researching council candidates more, I'm not going to vote for the following folks:

- Lenny Siegel: He appears to actively block any law enforcement against RVs
- Pat Showalter: Appears to support Lenny's views with regard to RVs
- Lucas Ramirez: appears to support non-enforcement and/or is against removing RVs from our city streets

Please don't vote for these 3 candidates


Its not always what you think
Registered user
Rengstorff Park
on Oct 15, 2018 at 5:11 pm
Its not always what you think, Rengstorff Park
Registered user
on Oct 15, 2018 at 5:11 pm
1 person likes this

I think if there are responsible RV owners, there would be no problem. I am one. I move sooner than 72 hours. When I move in/out, I pick up all the trash on the sidewalk around me so it’s cleaner than when I came.
I just moved into my home and I love it. It’s not your business why I did. There are many emotional and valid reasons. I also just love it. I give Mountain View my business. I clean up. I volunteer in this community.
I think even if you have no money, there are things we can do to make it better. Clean up. Volunteer. Even if you can’t move your rig bc it is broken down and you can’t afford to fix it. Your neighbors would appreciate it if you cleaned up. Helped out. Volunteered.

I don’t know.
Just thoughts from a newbie who blew someone’s mind bc I was walking around and cleaning up other people’s trash around my home.


Its not always what you think
Registered user
Rengstorff Park
on Oct 15, 2018 at 5:24 pm
Its not always what you think, Rengstorff Park
Registered user
on Oct 15, 2018 at 5:24 pm
4 people like this

Plus!
Thank you MtvResident for telling me exactly who I SHOULD vote for in this election. I appreciate the feedback. Which is the opposite of yours, but I appreciate the time saving provided, none the less!


Its not always what you think
Registered user
Rengstorff Park
on Oct 15, 2018 at 5:43 pm
Its not always what you think, Rengstorff Park
Registered user
on Oct 15, 2018 at 5:43 pm
1 person likes this

What if.........
What if we had conversations with no judgements
What if we could raise money to fix broken RVs so they could move.
What if we had a place where those RVs could dump, fees on a
sliding scale
What if we could get RV dwellers, because they now feel supported and not outliers, to participate and clean up and volunteer.
What if..........


mv_resident
Registered user
Castro City
on Oct 15, 2018 at 10:04 pm
mv_resident, Castro City
Registered user
on Oct 15, 2018 at 10:04 pm
25 people like this

What if.....
Our police officers were allowed to enforce the law and fined/towed RVs
What if.....
Bike lanes and corners weren't blocked by oversized vehicles putting bikers, pedestrians and motorists in danger
What if.....
We all followed the law and paid taxes to the City of Mountain View
What if.....
Our city didn't prioritize a few to the expense of all
What if.....
Our city didn't have this horrible eye sore
What if.....


Randy Guelph
Registered user
Cuernavaca
on Oct 15, 2018 at 10:40 pm
Randy Guelph, Cuernavaca
Registered user
on Oct 15, 2018 at 10:40 pm
2 people like this

@Its not always what you think,

Make sure you register your fellow vehicle dwellers to vote as well. If you don't want the wrong people to get into office, you will need to vote and protect yourselves. You are entitled to and guaranteed just as much of a voice in our city as homeowners.


Why?
Registered user
Sylvan Park
on Oct 16, 2018 at 3:42 pm
Why?, Sylvan Park
Registered user
on Oct 16, 2018 at 3:42 pm
18 people like this

@Its not always what you think
There are dedicated RV parks in our county.
Here is the link: Web Link
The streets of Mountain View is not one of them.


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