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Mayor clarifies skateboarding law

August 05, 2003|y JULIE E. GREENE

julieg@herald-mail.com

SHARPSBURG - Three skateboarders got off with a warning last month for skating on sidewalks, but Sharpsburg Mayor Hal Spielman said Monday night that's it for the warnings.

The youths' skateboards were confiscated after police caught them skating on sidewalks on July 25, Spielman said at Monday night's mayor and Town Council meeting.

The skateboarders got their boards back without paying the $15 redemption fee after they and their parents met with Spielman last Tuesday, he said.

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The youths thought Spielman failed at previous meetings to mention that skateboarding was prohibited on all sidewalks in town so Spielman said the youths were not charged the redemption fee.

Several youths had shown up at town meetings this spring and summer because they wanted the town to create a skateboard park, but town officials said the project was too big for the town.

Spielman said the youths were left with the impression that skateboarding was only prohibited on sidewalks near Town Square, but that's not true.

Spielman said Monday night that he was publicizing the law and had several copies available Monday night so there would be no further confusion.

Skateboarding is allowed on roads and alleys, but not on sidewalks or private property, Spielman said.

The law states skateboarding also is prohibited in parking lots owned, leased, operated or maintained by the town.

The law applies to bicycling, skateboarding, inline skating and other play vehicles.

These activities are prohibited in any parks or playgrounds owned, operated or maintained by the town, the law states. The law makes exceptions in parks and playgrounds for public "ways or roadways" in those areas and for designated "riding areas."

Upon conviction for breaking this law, the maximum fine for the first offense is $25, the law states. The maximum fine for a second offense within a year of the first conviction is $50.

The maximum fine for a third or subsequent offenses within a year of a prior conviction is $1,000 with the specific amount set by the judge, Town Attorney Charles Wagaman said.

The law exempts tricycles and other play vehicles with three or more wheels that are being used by small children under the supervision of a parent, adult or responsible person.

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