Chapter 9.12
PUBLIC PARK AND RECREATION AREAS – REGULATIONS

Sections:

9.12.010    Purpose.

9.12.020    Definitions.

9.12.030    Compliance with regulations.

9.12.040    Power of ejection by authorized persons.

9.12.050    Hours.

9.12.060    Care of public property.

9.12.070    Restrooms and washrooms.

9.12.080    Care of trees, shrubbery, lawns.

9.12.081    Use of metal detectors.

9.12.090    Climbing trees or other objects.

9.12.100    Care of wild animals and birds.

9.12.110    Possession of firearms.

9.12.120    Refuse, trash and litter.

9.12.130    Advertising matter.

9.12.140    Motorized vehicles, bicycles and other conveyances.

9.12.141    Repealed.

9.12.145    Sonoma Overlook Trail.

9.12.147    Montini Preserve.

9.12.150    Disorderly conduct.

9.12.160    Enforcement of rules.

9.12.170    Compliance with law.

9.12.180    Repealed.

9.12.190    Abandonment of animals.

9.12.200    Prohibition of fires.

9.12.210    Repealed.

9.12.220    Intoxicated persons.

9.12.230    Horse riding prohibited.

9.12.240    Regulation of specific activities.

9.12.245    Private lessons on city-owned tennis courts prohibited.

9.12.250    Knives prohibited.

9.12.260    Defacing of regulations.

9.12.270    Car wash prohibited.

9.12.280    Use by public and private groups.

9.12.290    Penalty.

9.12.010 Purpose.

It is the purpose of the city council in the adoption of these regulations to afford the residents of the city the fullest possible use of recreational facilities within the city. By the adoption of these regulations, the city council proposes to protect the facilities which the residents of the city have established and assure that all will have an equal opportunity to use these facilities. The regulations herein contained shall govern the use of all public parks, recreation areas and facilities. Observance of the regulations herein contained shall be a condition precedent to the use by the public of city-owned public parks, recreation areas and facilities. Nothing herein is intended to interfere with the activities of park maintenance personnel in the performance of their official duties. (Ord. 432 § 1, 1971).

9.12.020 Definitions.

The following terms and phrases, whenever used in this chapter, shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section:

A. “Chief of police” means the chief of police of the city, appointed by the city manager;

B. “Parks” includes all grounds and bodies of water dedicated to public recreation purposes under the control, management or direction of the city council, and includes those portions of the former Northwestern Pacific Railroad right-of-way which have been designated as a bicycle path or paths as well as all other pathways designated for the use of bicycles, and identified by appropriate signs;

C. “Person” includes persons, association, partnership, firm and corporation. (Ord. 79-12 § 1, 1979; Ord. 432 § 2, 1971).

9.12.030 Compliance with regulations.

All persons entering upon land or water owned, managed or controlled by the city may remain on such land or water only so long as they abide by the rules and regulations contained herein or adopted pursuant to regulations of the city council and shall, while on the land or water areas, abide by any instructions and directions of duly authorized employees of the city. (Ord. 432 § 3, 1971).

9.12.040 Power of ejection by authorized persons.

In addition to any other provision for the enforcement of these regulations, the city manager, or his duly authorized representatives, shall have the authority to eject from the parks and recreation areas, any person acting in violation of the rules and regulations. Failure of such person to leave the property or facility managed or belonging to the city for violation of any of these regulations shall be a further violation of these regulations. (Ord. 432 § 4, 1971).

9.12.050 Hours.

It is unlawful for any person to loiter or remain in any park, building, plaza or recreation area at any time between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. during the months of April, May, June, July, August, September and October. It is unlawful for any person to loiter or remain in any park, building, plaza or recreation area at any time between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. during the months of November, December, January, February and March.

The city council by motion or resolution and where notice of such hours is posted at the site may allow for exceptions to these hours of usage. These restrictions do not apply to functions or events held under permits issued by the parks and recreation commission. This section does not prohibit pedestrian transit through any park area at any time of the night for the single purpose of reaching a destination beyond the park area. (Ord. 91-8 § 1, 1991; Ord. 86-8 § 4, 1986; Ord. 432 § 5, 1971).

9.12.060 Care of public property.

It is unlawful for any person to mark, deface, disfigure, injure, tamper with, or displace or remove any building, bridges, tables, benches, fireplaces, railings, fencing, paving or paving material, water lines or other public utilities, or parts or appurtenances thereof, signs, notices, placards, whether temporary or permanent, monuments, stakes, posts or other boundary markers, or other structures or equipment facilities or park property or appurtenances whatsoever, either real or personal. (Ord. 432 § 6, 1971).

9.12.070 Restrooms and washrooms.

It is unlawful for any person to fail to cooperate in maintaining restrooms and washrooms in a neat and sanitary condition. Male persons shall not resort to any restroom and washroom facilities set apart for women, and female persons shall not resort to restroom and washroom facilities set apart for men; provided, that this shall not apply to children accompanied by an adult person. (Ord. 432 § 7, 1971).

9.12.080 Care of trees, shrubbery, lawns.

It is unlawful for any person to damage, cut, carve, transplant or remove any tree, plant, wood, turf, or grass, or pick the flowers or seeds of any tree or plant, or attach any rope, wire or other object to any tree or plant. (Ord. 432 § 8, 1971).

9.12.081 Use of metal detectors.

It is unlawful for any person to use a metal detector in any city park or recreation area except that such a device may be used to locate lost items if permission is first obtained from the director of public works or his authorized representative. Such permission shall not include any right to cut or probe the soil with a knife or any other instrument or device. (Ord. 83-1 § 1, 1983).

9.12.090 Climbing trees or other objects.

It is unlawful for any person to climb any tree, or walk, stand or sit upon monuments, vases, fountains, railings, fences or upon any other property not designated or customarily used for such purposes. (Ord. 432 § 9, 1971).

9.12.100 Care of wild animals and birds.

It is unlawful for any person to hunt, molest, harm, frighten, trap, chase, tease, shoot or throw missiles at any animal, reptile or bird; or remove or have in his possession the young of any wild animal, or the eggs or nest or young of any reptile or bird. (Ord. 432 § 10, 1971).

9.12.110 Possession of firearms.

A. It is unlawful for any person, other than peace officers in the discharge of their duties, to use, carry or possess firearms, air rifles, BB guns, spring guns, bows and arrows, slings or any other form of weapon potentially inimical to wildlife and dangerous to human safety except as provided in subsections B and C of this section.

B. Bows and arrows may be brought into a park or facility for use at an established range or for participation in a city-planned or approved archery program.

C. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit a weapon from being carried by any person under a permit issued by the chief of police or other legally authorized person. (Ord. 432 § 11, 1971).

9.12.120 Refuse, trash and litter.

It is unlawful for any person to dump, deposit, or leave any bottles, broken glass, ashes, paper, boxes, cans, dirt, rubbish, waste, garbage or refuse, or other trash, except in the receptacle provided therefor. (Ord. 432 § 12, 1971).

9.12.130 Advertising matter.

It is unlawful for any person to distribute, circulate, give away, throw or deposit in or on any park and recreation area any handbills, circulars, pamphlets, papers, or advertisements, or post or affix the same to any tree, fence or structure in any park or recreation area except with permission of the parks and recreation commission. The posting of official public notices is excepted and nothing herein shall be construed to prohibit the exercise of individual rights guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States. (Ord. 432 § 13, 1971).

9.12.140 Motorized vehicles, bicycles and other conveyances.

It is unlawful for any person to operate or drive an automobile, motorcycle, truck, trailer, wagon, motorscooter, bicycle, skateboard or other conveyance in any public park or recreation area, including the City Plaza, on other than roads or paths designated and posted for that purpose. No person shall operate or ride on a bicycle, skateboard or other conveyance propelled by human power in the City Plaza but such a conveyance may be walked or carried into or through the Plaza. No motor vehicles are allowed within the Plaza north of the face of the City Hall during the hours of darkness unless used and parked by persons attending a meeting or business gathering at the City Hall. During special events such as the Vintage Festival, Fourth of July celebration, and during any other event which is sanctioned by permit of the parks and recreation commission, vehicles may be authorized within the Plaza by the commission to the extent it deems reasonable and necessary in connection with the permitted event. (Ord. 89-4 § 2, 1989).

9.12.141 Skate park regulations.

Repealed by Ord. 99-10. (Ord. 98-5 § 1, 1998).

9.12.145 Sonoma Overlook Trail.

In addition to applicable regulations set forth in this chapter and elsewhere in the municipal code, the following restrictions shall apply to the use of the Sonoma Overlook Trail:

A. Notwithstanding SMC 9.12.050, hours of use shall be limited to 6:00 a.m. to dusk.

B. Smoking shall be prohibited.

C. The fire chief shall be authorized to close the trail during periods of high fire danger. (Ord. 2001-8 § 1, 2001).

9.12.147 Montini Preserve.

In addition to applicable regulations set forth in this chapter and elsewhere in the municipal code, the following restrictions shall apply to the use of the Montini Preserve:

A. Notwithstanding SMC 9.12.050, hours of use shall be limited to 6:00 a.m. to dusk.

B. Smoking shall be prohibited.

C. The fire chief shall be authorized to close the Preserve during periods of high fire danger.

D. The public works director shall be authorized to close all or portions of the Montini Preserve on a temporary basis as needed for maintenance or to implement the grazing plan approved for the Preserve as amended from time to time. (Ord. 08-2014 § 2, 2014).

9.12.150 Disorderly conduct.

It is unlawful for any person to engage in boisterous, threatening, abusive, insulting or indecent language or engage in any disorderly conduct or behavior tending to a breach of the public peace and enjoyment of park and recreation areas. (Ord. 432 § 15, 1971).

9.12.160 Enforcement of rules.

The chief of police and his subordinates shall, in connection with their duties, diligently enforce the provisions hereof and shall have the authority to eject from the park and recreation areas any persons acting in violation of these rules and regulations. (Ord. 432 § 16, 1971).

9.12.170 Compliance with law.

All persons entering upon land or water owned, managed or controlled by the city of Sonoma shall obey all ordinances of the city of Sonoma, the laws of the state of California, and the instructions and directions of duly authorized employees of the city with respect to the use of such public facilities. (Ord. 432 § 17, 1971).

9.12.180 Animals in parks.

Repealed by Ord. 05-2012. (Ord. 432 § 18, 1971).

9.12.190 Abandonment of animals.

Persons shall not leave or deposit dogs, cats or other animals, or fowl, or fish, whether dead or alive, within the boundaries of land or water owned, managed or controlled by the city. (Ord. 432 § 19, 1971).

9.12.200 Prohibition of fires.

No person, other than one acting under authorization, direction or permission of the city manager or his duly authorized subordinate, shall build, light, kindle or maintain any open, or outdoor fire at any place within the boundaries of land or water, owned, managed or controlled by the city, except in areas or facilities specifically built and designated for this purpose. (Ord. 432 § 20, 1971).

9.12.210 Alcoholic beverages.

Repealed by Ord. 08-2004. (Ord. 06-2003 § 1, 2003; Ord. 92-21 § 1, 1992; Ord. 86-9 § 1, 1986; Ord. 83-11 § 1, 1983; Ord. 432 § 21, 1971).

9.12.220 Intoxicated persons.

No person who is intoxicated, noisy, disorderly, boisterous, or publicly offensive shall be admitted into or permitted to remain within any park and those persons charged with the responsibility of the park shall refuse admittance to any such person and shall eject any such person therefrom. (Ord. 432 § 22, 1971).

9.12.230 Horse riding prohibited.

No person shall ride a horse, pony, mule or animal of any description onto or over land owned, managed or controlled by the city other than upon roads and trails designated for horseback riding in areas set aside from time to time by the city specifically for equestrian activity. Exception to this provision may be granted from time to time by the parks and recreation commission for special events. (Ord. 432 § 23, 1971).

9.12.240 Regulation of specific activities.

No person shall drive, putt or in any other fashion play or practice golf or use golf balls, or fly model airplanes on or over land, or operate model boats or model automobiles, or model craft of any kind or description on land or water owned, managed or controlled by the city, except in areas set aside for these specific activities. (Ord. 432 § 24, 1971).

9.12.245 Private lessons on city-owned tennis courts prohibited.

Private lessons given by a paid instructor shall be prohibited on city tennis courts. A program of tennis lessons, provided by a certified nonprofit organization and available to the general public, may be allowed on city tennis courts subject to the review of the parks and recreation commission and the approval of the city council. (Ord. 91-11 § 1, 1991).

9.12.250 Knives prohibited.

It is unlawful for any person to carry in any public park or recreation area any hatchet, ax, machete, brush knife or any other device other than pocketknife, capable of cutting, defacing or mutilating trees or shrubs, without permission of duly authorized representatives of the city. (Ord. 432 § 25, 1971).

9.12.260 Defacing of regulations.

No person shall injure, deface or destroy any notice, rules, or regulations for the government of parks, posted or in any manner permanently fixed by order or permission of the city manager or his representatives. (Ord. 432 § 26, 1971).

9.12.270 Car wash prohibited.

It is unlawful for any person to wash or repair any motor vehicle within any public park area. (Ord. 432 § 27, 1971).

9.12.280 Use by public and private groups.

The city council, upon recommendation of the parks and recreation commission, shall establish conditions for the issuance of permits to public and private groups for use of any park, park building or park facility. Further, the city council delegates to the parks and recreation commission authority to issue such permits and to establish priorities for the use of any park, park building or park facility. No person shall sell, vend, peddle or distribute any merchandise or property whatever within any park, park building or park facility without prior approval of the parks and recreation commission. Olsen Park and Jean K. T. Carter Park shall be closed to use except by special written permission of the city council, and it shall be unlawful for any person to loiter, use, recreate or remain in any portion thereof at any time between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m. (Ord. 92-21 § 2, 1992; Ord. 88-7 §§ 1, 2, 1988; Ord. 86-9 § 2, 1986; Ord. 432 § 28, 1971).

9.12.290 Penalty.

Any person violating any provision of this chapter is guilty of a misdemeanor. Any person who is convicted of a violation of this chapter is deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a fine and/or penalty not to exceed the maximum as prescribed in the California Penal Code. (Ord. 432 § 29, 1971).