By Bob Balgemann


MACHESNEY PARK – Village officials are changing some of the rules that regulate public parks within the corporate limits of town.

In a memorandum to the public improvement and safety committee (PISC), Public Works Superintendent Chad Hunter explained that with the opening of the new boat ramp along Shore Drive, it was felt that “current park regulations warranted some changes and additions to better regulate the village’s park system.”

Significant changes were made in the sections of Chapter 28 of the Village Code dealing with the hours parks are open, parking lots, and intoxicating liquors.

Chapter 28 consists of two major sections: Article I, Rules regulating the administration of public parks, and Article II, Prohibitions.

There are 12 subsections in all, among them rules for disorderly conduct, gambling, concessions, weapons, missles and fireworks, animals, fire and sound amplifications.

The PISC at its March meeting recommended approval of the changes proposed by staff. The revisions were expected to be considered during the April 4 village board meeting. Here are the new pertinent sections”

  1. Closing hours

All public recreational parks under the jurisdiction of the village of Machesney Park shall be open to the public between the hours of 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. It shall be unlawful for anyone to be present in any public parks between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.

Exceptions are a special use or event behind held with permission of the village. No person or property shall remain in a park after closing, except with permission from the village.

In addition, all public boat launch parks in the village shall be open to the public from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. It shall be unlawful for anyone to be in such a park between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. other than to launch or retrieve vehicles from the river, to use the bike path or be part of a special use or event that has been approved by the village.

  1. Parking lots

Only A and B-licensed vehicles may be parked in a public park at any time. In addition, no such vehicle may be parked there beyond the normal closing hour.

Exceptions are being there to retrieve or launch a vehicle from the river or while attending a function, which has been approved by the village.

  1. Intoxicating liquors

No one shall consume or possess any intoxicating liquor upon any property of the village of Machesney Park, or in any park owned or leased by the village.

The only exception is transporting liquor from one vehicle to another when utilizing the village’s boat launch.

Anyone violating a park rule will be subject to a minimum fine of $50 and a maximum fine of $100. Any day a violation continues will be considered a separate offense.

Someone violating rules governing gambling will face a fine of between $100 and $200.

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