Editorial: Move along please

Last updated 07:58 29/10/2012

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Parking your car on the side of the road and offering it for sale shouldn't be seen as a big deal.

Especially if it's outside your own house.

You pay rates, right, so why should it be an issue?

Why should it matter even if you do it away from home, on another street with others of like mind?

Well, Timaru District Council has a problem with that, and is looking to address it with a bylaw.

The problem is not when one or two vehicles are parked together for sale, but when that number grows to five, six, 14.

As has happened in Morgans Rd. And to a lesser extent, earlier in Otipua Rd.

What's the problem? Well, in Morgans Rd the cars take up spaces members of the public might want on a Saturday to watch sports. Not a biggie, sure, but an inconvenience to some. In Otipua Rd there were safety issues and some neighbours were annoyed. It's not just the cars for sale, it's the cars of those stopping to check them out as well.

Mostly though it's the precedent. Allow it in one area and what's to stop it happening elsewhere.

So the council is right to look into it. Perhaps, even, there's been some pressure from local car yards, although there's a suggestion some car yards may be leaving vehicles there themselves.

The difficulty will be how to word a bylaw, and then how to police it.

Will you be allowed one car outside your own house? Two? What prompts some action? A complaint to the council? And then what? Tow the car away? Fine the owner? Should trailer loads of firewood be included? What about advertising hoardings on trailers?

Policing such a bylaw will come at a cost to the council, but it is right to address the issue.

There's a hassle in all that. Just as there is now for some residents.

A blanket ban though goes too far. You should be allowed to advertise your own car for sale outside your own house.

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- The Timaru Herald

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