Council makes revisions to traffic bylaw

by Phil Ambroziak

During the regular council meeting held Aug. 24, first reading was given to a revised traffic bylaw – a move city officials say was prompted last fall by conversations between then bylaw enforcement officer Frank Richardson and a provincial court judge regarding enforceability of certain provisions.

“Administration also took this opportunity to review the current bylaw for accuracy, rearrange some sections for easier reference and add in new provisions based on consulting the traffic bylaws of other municipalities,” noted acting city clerk Jessica Walters in her official recommendation to council.

Major changes include: adding regulations with regard to the parking of recreational vehicles on the street; new regulations about the operation or parking of vehicles on municipal property; prohibiting the parking of vehicles on residential front lawns; empowering the public works manager to have vehicles towed where the street has been marked as a no parking zone for maintenance purposes; adding penalties for ignoring or moving barricades; changing the required parking distance from residential dwellings for dangerous goods transporters from 30 metres to 100 metres; clarifying the procedures for impounding vehicles by removing duplication; making changes to the sections regarding ticketing, summons and conviction and more.

“The majority of the changes to the bylaw are to aid with clarity, not actually changing rules or regulations,” Walters continued.

Councillor Conrad Read, however, noted an item in the existing bylaw he was unfamiliar with.

“It has to do with speed limits in school zones,” Read said. “I didn’t realize the speed limits are only in effect for certain times of the day. If this is the case, shouldn’t the signs be marked?”

Currently, signs indicate a 30 km/h speed limit in all school zones within the municipality. The signs do not indicate this is only the case from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday.

“They should be marked, but we could also change the bylaw to have the speed limit in effect all the time,” Walters responded. “This way, we won’t have to change the signs.”

Read went on to say he assumed this was the case already.

“This wasn’t our intent with the exiting traffic bylaw, so we just wouldn’t enforce the speed zone after a certain point in the day,” explained city manager Diana Burton. “Although, many of the schools and playgrounds are used after hours.”

Council unanimously agreed to include this change to the bylaw when it comes back to the table for a second reading.

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