Homeowners may see more oversight of parking lots near Ralph Wilson Stadium

All around Ralph Wilson Stadium people invite fans to park on their lawns.

“This is my business, this is my livelihood,” said Mark Lester, who runs Yellow Brick Parking.

Homeowners like Lester could soon face more oversight. There’s a new proposal to require homeowners to get residential parking permits and sign a waiver allowing Orchard Park Police on the property.

“I was very surprised they would want to go so far as to infringe upon people’s rights to gather and enjoy themselves,” said Lester.

He is a third generation lot owner and said he parks 100 to 150 cars on his property during Bills games.

“This is completely unnecessary,” he said. “There’s never been any violence or anything like that in my lot, never had any of those things you see online that happen elsewhere.”

Orchard Park Police proposed the waiver to the Town Board last Wednesday. Town Supervisor Dr. Patrick Keem said the board requested more information before making a decision. It wanted to hear details about why police would need to go on private property.

Commercial lot owners are already required to get a permit, pay a fee and allow police access.

“I don’t’ have a problem with it but I think anybody who parks cars around the stadium area should be all equal rulings for everyone: same amount of restrooms, fees, police access.” said lot owner Eric Matwijow.

Matwijow doesn’t think this proposal will change the way fans prepare for Bills games.

“I think in general most people are well behaved but just like anything, one or two apples wreck it,” said Matwijow.

Orchard Park Police were not available for an interview before a Town Board meeting on Wednesday, July 6 but told us they planned to discuss it.

The next board meeting isn’t until July 20, which would be a month before the home opener.

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