Welcome to the City's Frequently Asked Questions page where you can find answers to commonly inquired about topics. Explore the FAQ library below by keyword search or by filtering by department.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I report a noise complaint?
Noise violations can occur at any hour and may include noise sources such as loud parties, motorcycles, leaf blowers, construction etc. Commercial areas generally have less restrictive noise regulations. To report a noise complaint please call (805) 461-5051.
How do I report a vehicle that has been abandoned?
Write down a description of the vehicle, the license plate number, the address nearest to where it is parked and call (805) 461-5051 with the information. If the vehicle is determined to be on public right of way, traffic volunteers will attempt to contact to the owner, post a notice on the vehicle for 72 hour abatement, then follow up by towing the vehicle if it is not moved within the 72 hour time frame.
How do I report someone illegally dumping in a storm drain?
For major emergency spills, please call 911.
Storm drains carry water to local creeks. Never let anything get into the gutter, street or storm drain that you wouldn't want to find in our creeks, rivers and oceans.
If you think someone may be dumping something harmful into the gutter or down a storm drain, please call Public Works Maintenance Operations at (805) 470-3148 or the City's Stormwater Engineer at (805) 470-3462.
How do I schedule an Inspection?
For Building, Planning, and Public Works inspections, call the automated 24-hour inspection request hotline at (805) 466-8099. Inspection requests made after 5:00 p.m. will receive 2nd business day service. Inspections may be scheduled Monday - Friday. Please be advised, A.M. or P.M. requests will be accommodated as scheduling permits.
For fire inspections, call (805) 466-3300.
How does the City determine where crosswalks are located?
Installation of crosswalks is governed by the California Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (CA MUTCD), Section 3B.18, and the California Vehicle Code, Section 21106, subject to engineering judgement at specification locations. Typical crosswalk locations fall into one of two categories: at a signalized or stop-controlled intersection, or at a non-intersection (mid-block) location. Additional specific design standards are applicable for crosswalks near schools.
The purpose of crosswalks is to direct and channelize pedestrian traffic, and the MUTCD is clear that installation of crosswalks should be primarily at those locations where vehicular traffic control is already provided (signalized and stop-controlled intersections). Crosswalks at non-intersection locations are generally discouraged, particularly on roadways with higher speeds and more than two lanes, as the crosswalk can give a false sense of safety and actually increase risk to pedestrians.
How does the City determine which roads are included in construction projects?
The City maintains approximately 145 miles of roads, with repair and resurfacing paid for via several different funding sources. The combined funding provides an average of approximately $5.5 million annually for roadway repair and reconstruction. Previous analysis of roadway needs and funding has estimated that this level of funding is slightly less than is needed to maintain the roadway system at its current condition, and significant additional funding would be needed to increase the condition of the overall system appreciably.
Subsequently, selection and treatment type for roadway work is key to optimizing how limited funding is spent on City roadways. All city-maintained roadways are tracked within a pavement management system, using the Metropolitan Transportation Commission’s (MTC) StreetSaver® program. Each roadway segment is given a Pavement Condition Index (PCI) score between 0-100, which is updated every five years by a contracted roadway condition expert. The purpose of the Pavement Management System is to track inventory, store work history, and furnish budget estimates to optimize funding for improving the City’s pavement system.
Expenditures for repairing and maintaining neighborhood roads and other roadways involve a process designed to provide transparency and fairness. The City has implemented a “Critical Point Management” methodology. This methodology selects road segments whose conditions are such that if repairs or maintenance is not performed in the near future, the road will deteriorate into a condition that will require more extensive and costly repairs to bring it to a similar state of good condition that less costly repairs and maintenance could realize if done sooner. The end result of Critical Point Management is prioritization of road repairs and maintenance with the objective of providing the lowest life cycle costs and optimizing the overall pavement conditions of the roadway system. This evaluation is undertaken every two years as part of the budget process, with projects selected for the upcoming five years.
How long can a car stay parked on the street?
Atascadero Municipal Code, Section 4-2.304 limits on-street parking to a maximum of 72 consecutive hours. Any vehicle exceeding that limit is subject to removal by the Police or Fire Departments in accordance with California Vehicle Code 22651 and 22669.
If you think there is an abandoned car in your neighborhood please call the Atascadero Police Department at (805) 461-5051. Any other questions relating to parking time limits and restrictions can be directed to the Public Works Department at (805) 470-3456.
How long will it take to receive my permit?
The time frame for obtaining your permit will depend on the permit class. For an estimated time frame please view our submittal intake checklists
How many animals can I have on my property?
How much is a permit?
Permit costs are dependent upon the scope of work. New construction is based on the construction type, occupancy, and size. Replacements and remodels are based on the cost of construction and/or number of required inspections. For an estimate of costs, contact a Permit Technician at email@example.com.
I called my inspection in yesterday before 5 pm, how do I know when the inspector will show up?
On the Inspection Hotline voicemail, you may request to have your inspection in the a.m. or p.m. and to have the inspector call with a 30 minutes lead to his arrival. The City inspectors make every effort to meet all of these requests. You may call (805) 461-5000 after 8:30 a.m., the day of inspection to confirm scheduling and time frame.
I need to be booked and released. How do I have this done?
If you are instructed by the Court to be booked and released, please bring your paperwork from the Court to the Police Department between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. and an officer will respond to the station to complete the process.
I reported a crime, but the person was never charged. Why?
The decision to file charges is not something the Police Department has control over. While we can accurately document the facts of a crime, including your statements and make a logical identification of someone as being responsible, it is ultimately the decision of the District Attorney on whether or not to file a criminal complaint. If your case was not filed you should contact the officer or detective involved and discuss the matter with them. They may also be able to share with you the rationale, if provided, of the District Attorney’s declination of the complaint.
I think my dog may have been picked up by the Atascadero Police Department after it was found running loose. How do I get it back?
All domestic animals captured by Atascadero Police Department officers are turned over to SLO Animal Services. You can contact them at (805) 781-4400 to inquire about your pet or visit the SLO Animal Services website for listings with photos of animals found and currently at the shelter or found and being cared for by private citizens.
I want a copy of my police report to prepare for my court appearance.
Police reports cannot be released prior to review by the District Attorney. You will receive a copy of your report on your first court date (your arraignment). Please contact the San Luis Obispo Superior Court at (805) 706-3600 for more information.
Is it free to use a BBQ area at an Atascadero Park?
Picnic bench areas with small BBQs are available on a first-come, first-served basis for no fee. Larger group BBQ areas can be reserved for a fee. Please visit our Parks, Facilities and Trails page.