Need to Know Laws

Many laws exist in the form of State Statutes and City Ordinances. This page contains some of the more common laws that people should be aware of. If you have a specific question, we encourage you to contact the Ralston Police Department at 402-331-1786 or City Hall at 402-331-6677.

Click on a subject below.

Alarms Nuisances Parks Texting While Driving
Animals Parking Smoking Vehicles



For the purpose of this section, an alarm will be defined as an audible alarm (whether monitored by a company or audible from outside the building) or an alarm monitored through an alarm company. All alarms must be registered with the City of Ralston. During a registration term, the following false alarm fees will be assessed: first, no charge; second, $100.00, third and subsequent, $250.00.


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If you own dogs or cats, you must keep the rabies vaccination current, have the animals licensed (through the Nebraska Humane Society, 444-7800), not harbor vicious animals, keep animals restrained by a chain or otherwise confined in or upon your property, keep them on a leash when walking, clean up any feces left by the animal, and not allow your dog to continually or frequently bark, howl, or yelp, disturbing the peace of others.

No person shall allow a stray dog or cat to habitually remain nor shall any feed stray dogs or cats within the house, yard, enclosure, or place. Strays shall be turned over to the Nebraska Humane Society.

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Nuisances include, but are not limited to: dead animals, animal manure, liquid household waste, tin cans, bottles, cans, ashes, scrap iron, broken stone, trash, litter, stagnant water, unlicensed vehicles/trailers, and weeds over 12 inches.

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No parking is allowed between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. on any street, or in excess of 12 inches from the curb, in any intersection, in a crosswalk, upon a bridge, within 30 feet of a traffic signal, within 20 feet of any intersection, within 4 feet of a crosswalk, within 15 feet of a fire hydrant ($100 fine), blocking any portion of a driveway, within 50 feet of a railroad crossing, within 20 feet of the driveway entry to the Fire Department ($100 fine), on any sidewalk or parkway, in fire lanes ($100 fine), in a handicap space ($100 fine), or at any other place where official signs prohibit parking, on grassy areas of the front and side yards of residences displayed for sale. All parking fines are $5.00 plus a $10.00 administrative fee if paid within 7 days of issue, unless otherwise noted.  After 7 days but within 30 days, the fine is twice the amount plus the administrative fee. After 30 days, the fine is four times the amount plus the administrative cost. City parking tickets can be paid at City Hall.

GUEST PERMITS that allow parking on the street between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. are available at the Ralston Police Department.  Permits are issued on a case-by-case basis and include, but are not limited to, family functions and driveway work.

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No person in a park shall deface any property, allow children over 6 years old to use the restrooms of the opposite sex, injure or damage trees, consume or possess or bring to the park any alcoholic beverage, or enter the park unless during park hours of 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. People with pets must keep them on a leash and clean up any feces left by the animal and properly dispose of the feces. All people shall obey all signs posted.

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In November 2007, the City passed Ordinance No. 1129, prohibiting smoking in workplaces and public gathering places within the jurisdiction of the City.

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No person shall use a handheld wireless communication device to read a written communication, manually type a written communication, or send a written communication while operating a motor vehicle which is in motion. Enforcement of this section by state or local law enforcement agencies shall be accomplished only as a secondary action when a driver of a motor vehicle has been cited or charged with a traffic violation or some other offense. The driver will be assessed points on his or her motor vehicle operator's license AND fined $200 for the first offense, with increasing fines for each subsequent such offense. This offense includes messaging done on a laptop while driving.

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Vehicles must be licensed (unless garaged), not parked in violation of parking ordinances, operated with current insurance (owners have 30 days to license a new car, but must have insurance immediately upon purchase), operated within the speed limits (fines in school zones and construction zones are doubled), and operated in compliance with safety restraint laws.

Safety restraint laws indicate that all children 15 and under must be restrained.  Children under the age of 5 years and weighing less than 40 pounds must be in a car seat; children 5-15 years old must be in an appropriate booster seat or seat belt. Failure to restrain children is a primary offense, and you can be stopped and ticketed without any other violation.

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