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If so and you parked it in the City of Coral Gables, you could have been cited for violating the City’s zoning code. Zoning and land use regulations to preserve aesthetics have long been recognized as a valid subject of the police power. In Kuvin v. City of Coral Gables, 35 FLW D1914b (Fla. 3d DCA August 25, 2010), the Court upheld a city ordinance that prohibited the parking of all trucks (including personal use pick-ups) in residential streets and driveways on the grounds that the ordinance was rationally related to the City’s legitimate interest in preserving the aesthetic integrity of its residential neighborhoods.

2004-2007 Ford F-150 Lariat.jpgWhile similar ordinances have been upheld in the past, the challenge that Kuvin raised was unique. He contended that the ordinance violated his fundamental First Amendment right of freedom of association by restricting who he could visit in the City with his Ford F150 and who could visit him at his rented house in Coral Gables. The trial court held for the City and Kuvin appealed.

A three-judge panel of the Third District Court of Appeal overturned the judgment, but upon rehearing before the entire Third DCA, the Court upheld the trial court and the validity of the ordinance. In short, the Court found that the ordinance did not restrict Kuvin’s right of association, only the location of where he could park his vehicle. Kuvin was not prohibited from driving his pick-up in the City, “he simply must garage the vehicle at night.” The fact that Kuvin’s rented house did not have a garage brought no sympathy from the Court — Kuvin rented the house after the ordinance was adopted and, therefore, had notice of the parking prohibition.

A lengthy majority opinion, a concurring opinion that chastises the majority, and a dissenting opinion that calls the majority opinion a “proverbial rubber stamp” makes for some interesting reading. In the end, the original three-judge panel certified to the Florida Supreme Court the following question as a matter of “great public importance.” May a City ordinance, which prohibits the parking of any truck in a private driveway or in a public parking space at night, as applied to a personal-use light duty truck, be upheld as constitutional?