By Cecilia Nasmith/Today’s Northumberland
Cobourg council accepted one major change in the Parking Bylaw amendment presented at council Monday, but not the other.
Brent Larmer presented the two changes contemplated, starting with a change to limits on-street parking in residential areas going down to three hours from 48. This is standard in many municipalities, Larmer said, and addresses the discontent from – for example – home owners who see cars parked in front of their houses that the car owners don’t want parked in front of theirs.
Like many bylaw provisions, enforcement will be complaint-driven rather than proactive. And education is the focus as opposed to revenue – the first ticket issued will be a warning ticket asking the owner to call the town so the reason for the ticket can be explained.
“If that doesn’t happen, officers knock on their door and talk with the resident,” he added.
The other change is to require cars parked on the street to be at least two metres from a driveway at both ends. This is meant to avoid those incidents where the end of a car is something of an obstacle to someone seeking to exit a driveway.
“This is not a revenue-generating bylaw,” Larmer repeated.
“That’s not the intention, but compliance and making all our neighbourhoods run efficiently and everyone’s getting along.”
Councillor Aaron Burchat had objections to both provisions.
The majority of people who must park on the street do move their cars regularly, he pointed out. And if someone without much space to park wants to throw a party or hold a family event, any neighbour with a grudge can cause a lot of trouble.
“I know it’s going to happen,” Burchat insisted.
As for the two-metre rule, he thinks that much clearance is not needed – that a one-metre clearance on each side allows plenty of maneuvering room for someone trying to pull out of a driveway without obstructing sight lines.
Larmer pointed out that certain exemptions to the 48-hour rule are part of the bylaw – renovation and work vehicles, for example, or workers offering home-care-type services to residents.
Burchat made motions to change the two-metre clearance to one metre and to return to the previous 48-hr. rule. The one-metre motion passed, but the 48-hour one was defeated – meaning the three-hour limit stands.