Park Rules

These rules are posted only in the city’s best known, Forest Park, – not Van Horn. Ignorance accounts for many infractions, but lack of enforcement is central to the continuing despoliation of this lovely and fragile environment.

I’ve called the rangers to report gun wielding, trash dumping, fires, off-road vehicles, animal abuse, public lewdness and dangerous conditions. I’ve called the parks department to ask that stinking, overflowing, trash barrels get emptied. The calls (except rarely) go to voice mail. Some have gotten results …eventually.

I don’t bother to report fine-able offenses I see daily: unleashed dogs – unlicensed fishing – drinking – drug taking – littering… because nothing happens. Only when local media covers an assault, shooting, and/or death, does the city make a temporary show of caring what goes on here. But I represent many who care deeply, and for whom intelligent management of Van Horn Park is necessary to the quality of life.

The Springfield Park Rules that follow have the violations I’ve either witnessed, or found evidence for in bold type.

Springfield, Massachusetts Park Rules

The Board of Park Commissioners of the City of Springfield, by virtue of the authority delegated to it under Chapter 45 of the General Laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the City Council of Springfield, hereby states the following prohibitions pertinent to the jurisdiction, and stipulates the schedule of fines for offenses against the following regulations.

A1. To operate any motor vehicle at a rate of speed in excess of fifteen (15) miles per hour (24Km/hr). Offenses under Section A1 shall be punishable by a fine of $100.00.

A2. To operate or park any motor vehicle except in the directions indicated and on ways or spaces expressly provided for such purposes.

A3. To operate commercial vehicles upon any park way, except by special permit from the Superintendent or to make deliveries to the Springfield Park Department.

A4. To operate any kind of motorized off-road or over-snow vehicle without express written consent of the Superintendent.

A5. To operate a bicycle, horse-drawn vehicle or carriage, where such use is prohibited.

A6-1. To operate or stop any vehicle or any sort is a manner that interferes with pedestrian use of pathways.

A6-2. To operate a motor vehicle in violation of the vehicle storage fee.

A6-3. Failure to stop for a stop sign or stop light.

A6-4. To operate a motor vehicle in a harsh, objectionable, reckless or dangerous manner. Offenses under Section A6-4 shall be punishable by a fine of $75.00.

A6-5. To use a skateboard or similar device in any public park, where such use is prohibited.

A7. To wash or clean any motor vehicle.

A8. To repair or service any motor vehicle, except emergency repairs or services.

A9. To operate a car radio, musical instrument, radio, tape player, or other sound amplification device in violation of Chapter 7.20.020(F) of the General Ordinances of the City of Springfield.

A10. To leave an unlocked unattended motor vehicle with the engine running.

A11. To block or impede any line of moving traffic.

Offenses under Section A1-A11 shall be punishable by a fine of $50.00, with higher fines as noted for sections A1 and A6-4 above.

B1. To post any form of advertising anywhere without the prior written consent of the Superintendent.

B2. To deposit, or leave the waste of food, or food containers, or other refuse, litter or trash, on park premises except within containers provided therefore.

B3. To throw refuse of any kind into any lake, stream, swimming pool, or other body of water.

B4. To deposit or dispose of any household or commercial refuse of any sort.

Offenses under Sections B1-B4 shall be punishable by a fine of $75.00

C1. To carry or discharge any firearms, firecrackers, or explosive devices or any sort without the prior written consent of the Board of Park Commissioners.

C2. To make, kindle, allow or maintain a fire for any purpose, except in places specifically provided therefore.

C3. To behave one’s self in a disorderly manner or annoy other persons using the park.

C4. To drink or have in one’s possession, any alcoholic or intoxicating beverage, beer, wine, or spirituous liquors.

C5. To posses, sell, give away, or use any substance, the possession or use of which is forbidden by law.

C6. To permit a dog under the control or care of any person to enter or remain in a public park unless restrained by a leash.

C7. To injure, molest or disturb any animal, bird or fish, or in any way to interfere with cages, boxes or enclosures for their protection.

C8. To fish or hunt on any park property, except at such places and times as shall be authorized by the laws of the Commonwealth and the Board of Park Commissioners.

C9. To operate a boat of any kind on any waterway under the jurisdiction of the Board of Park Commissioners except within daylight hours in full accordance with Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 90B, Section 11.

C10. To operate a boat in excess of a total length of sixteen (16) feet (5 meters).

C11. To operate any boat powered by any means other than manual, sail, or electric.

Offenses under Sections C1-C11 shall be punishable by a fine of $50.00

D1. To enter or remain upon any of the premises under the control of the Board of Park Commissioners later than one/half hour after local sunset or prior to one/half hour before local sunrise without the prior written consent of the Superintendent.

D2. To enter upon or make use of any portion of the premises under the control of the Board of Park Commissioners wherever such area shall have been marked as closed to the public.

D3. To cut, injure, crush, deface, or disturb any tree, shrub, plant, rock, building, cage, pen, monument, lawn, fence, bench, or other artifact or property.

D4. To erect or maintain a tent, shelter, camp, lodge, or other structure in any park without the prior written consent of the Superintendent.

D5. To sell, or offer for sale, any merchandise, service, item or article whatsoever, or to practice, carry on, conduct or solicit any trade occupation, business or profession, without the prior written consent of the Superintendent.

D6. To play any game or sport, whether organized or informal, on any park land except in such areas and at such times as are designated for such use.

D7. To swim, bathe, or wade in any body of water, except in such places and at such times as are designated for such use.

D8. To disobey any legal request or order of the Police, or any agent or employee of the Board of Park Commissioners.

D9. To gamble, bet, or have in one’s possession or control, any means or instrument used in the furtherance of illegal betting or gaming.

Offenses under Section D1-D7 shall be punishable by a fine of $50.00.  Offenses under Section D8-D9 shall be punishable by a fine of $75.00

AGGRAVATED MISBEHAVIOR

E1. A second violation of any regulation shall be punishable by a fine of $100.00, a third violation by a fine of $200.00, and a fourth violation by a fine of $300.00

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