Living in St. Peter
As students of Gustavus, you are citizens of St. Peter and, therefore, the St. Peter Police Department is your law enforcement agency. If you have been the victim of a crime, have any questions about the city or its laws, or have any reason to need the services of a law enforcement agency, please feel free to call the St. Peter Public Police Department any time, day or night, at 507-931-1550. Below are a few laws and regulations that are likely to affect you during the time you are attending Gustavus.
Parking: Violation of parking regulations will result in issuance of a parking ticket or towing of the illegally parked vehicle. General parking prohibitions (within ten feet of a fire hydrant, on a sidewalk, double parking, etc.) are in effect; and in addition, the city has an ordinance making on-street parking for a continuous period in excess of 24 hours unlawful.
Parking on 7th Street between Jefferson and Grace Streets and on Capital Drive is limited only for those with a St. Peter City parking permit.
Snow Emergencies: Members of the Gustavus community who live or park vehicles off-campus should also be aware that the City of St. Peter enforces a Snow Emergency ordinance. Anytime there is an accumulation of snow (2–3 inches) or ice that is likely to impede traffic, a 48-hour Snow Emergency will be declared. Once a Snow Emergency is declared, there is no parking on any of the posted Snow Emergency Routes for the entire 48-hour period. Beginning at midnight, for two days, there is no parking on residential streets midnight–7a.m. Beginning at 2a.m., for two days, there is no parking on downtown streets from 2 to 6a.m. Vehicles not removed from the streets during the enforcement period may be tagged and towed. Snow Emergencies will always be declared before 5 p.m. When it snows, call the city information line at 507-934-0675 for updated snow emergency information. Local radio station KRBI (FM 105.5) is also notified when a snow emergency is declared. KRBI may then report it on the air. Snow Emergencies are declared by the City of Saint Peter. You can sign up to be notified of snow emergencies through the Nixle web page, more information is available on the City of Saint Peter web page: http://www.saintpetermn.gov/nixle-communication-system
Parties: Any party that intrudes upon the rights of other community members is in violation of city ordinances. Such ordinances are also enforced at the city’s parks.
There are two ordinances that may be of particular interest to the Gustavus community. The first is an unlawful assembly ordinance. This ordinance makes excessive noise generated by groups of three or more persons from 10 p.m. to 8 a.m. (and audible at the property line or an adjacent residence, or at a distance of 50 feet if outdoors) a misdemeanor and gives the police authority to order people to leave the assembly.
The second ordinance applies to possession or consumption of alcohol in city parks. A permit is required for a person or group (any group, including departmental picnics arranged by faculty) to have hard liquor, a keg, quantities of wine greater than a gallon, or quantities of beer more than one 24-unit case in any of St. Peter’s parks (e.g., Minnesota Square, Levee Park, Gorman Park). A cleanup deposit of between $40 and $200 must accompany each permit application. Under the ordinance, the Police Department has the authority to eject any person or persons acting in violation and to confiscate and dispose of the alcoholic beverage involved. The permit may be immediately revoked upon violation of any park rule or permit condition. As with the unlawful assembly ordinance, violation is a misdemeanor and may result in arrests and/or fines.
In addition, a rental property ordinance authorizes sanctions including rental certificate revocation against rental property owners whose tenants are repeatedly cited for unlawful assembly or disorderly house.
Bicycles: All traffic laws apply, including those requiring proper lighting for night use. St. Peter has a fairly strong and active bicycle-licensing program. It’s a good idea to obtain a license here if your bicycle is not already registered.
Legal Drinking Age: The 21-year old drinking age is enforced in St. Peter. Both the State of Minnesota and the City of St. Peter have developed legislation making it unlawful: a) for minors to consume, purchase, or possess alcoholic beverages; to misrepresent their age or use false ID in order to purchase; or to enter licensed premises except to consume a meal; b) for legal-age persons to provide alcohol for minors or to induce minors to purchase or procure; or c) for any person to sell alcohol without a license. (See also the Alcohol Policy.) The city also regulates consumption in parks and public spaces (see above information).
Gustavus students may obtain an absentee ballot from their permanent home district or vote locally. Students who wish to vote locally and have not already registered may do so at the polls on any election day. The Gustavus campus falls into different wards and precincts; to learn which precinct your residence is in, check with the Office of Residential Life or look for notices posted prior to election days.