Portable Basketball Hoop in the Way — and an Answer

Resident Jamie Wetzel appeared before the San Marcos city council on Tuesday, December 14 to discuss his issues with the city’s property value and neighborhood preservation ordinance. Over the past few months, Wetzel has been found in violation of the ordinance and fined by code enforcement officers for having an obstruction in the public right of way &mdash a portable basketball hoop.

“I understand the public right of way needs to be free and clear,” said Wetzel. However, Wetzel has taken issue with the ordinance ecause city code enforcement personnel will ignore other basketball hoops that are there because he claims they are only allowed to cite the one specific person that was reported.

Wetzel expressed his displeasure with the complaint-driven process that the city employs when it comes to code enforcement. This process allows only one person “with an axe to grind” to determine if another deserves to get cited and “prosecuted” by city enforcement, says Wetzel.

“I’m asking the council to consider returning to a grace period for fining people while they study the impact of the city-sponsored harassment that’s facilitated through this anonymous reporting mechanism they have,” said Wetzel.

According to Wetzel there are no public basketball courts south of the 78, except at Sunset Park – which members of the community acknowledge is always crowded. He suggested that the city consider installing or make available more sporting facilities so that when enforcement does occur it would be reasonably expected that people wouldn’t have basketball hoops in the public right of way.

“We don’t want our kids playing video games,” said Wentzel. “Technically they’re not even allowed to play football down the street; they can get in trouble…for doing that.”

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