Using old paper and a glitch in the system might be the reason one person got off a parking ticket in Cobourg recently.
By-law and the Clerks Department seemed reluctant to pass along the information, but after nearly six weeks, Today’s Northumberland received a response.
The person received a ticket on Sunday, October 29, 2023 shortly before 11 a.m. while parked on King Street West.
As the man, who asked not to be identified looked more into the $40 ticket, there seemed to be some discrepancies in the wording on the back of the ticket and the town’s website.
“I did some due diligence and found a few oddities,” the person told Today’s Northumberland.
“The Parking By-law referenced on the back of the ticket appeared to indicate that parking wasn’t enforced in the area at the time of year. There was also a different by-law referenced on the front of the ticket. Also a link on the town’s website directly people to fight a ticket was broken. Based on that I decided to challenge the ticket.”
The man appealed the ticket through the AMP program and won on November 8, 2023.
On Friday, December 8, 2023 the Town of Cobourg sent a reply back to Today’s Northumberland stating that any community member who has received a Penalty Notice may request a review through the Town of Cobourg’s appeal process.
The reply also referenced a section of the 2022 bylaw, brought up during the appearance that stated the parking bylaw is “enforced Monday to Sunday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., holidays included Victoria Day to Thanksgiving Weekend.”
The town admitted that section “had inadvertently remained posted on the Town’s website for public reference.”
“This exact wording appears to indicate that parking in this area will not be enforced from Thanksgiving Weekend to Victoria Day. Due to its misleading nature, this wording was corrected during the Town of Cobourg’s 2023 review.”
With any trial process, “cases are decided not only on the law, but also the moral right and wrong.”
The current bylaw was “updated” and now in force and effect.
The appellant was told they won the case because the ticket referenced the 2022 bylaw on the back and the 2023 bylaw on the front. It appears the Town was using old pre-printed paper in the electronic ticket printer.
Another error in the Town’s response was they stated the link to the appeals page was broken on the municipal website.
It was during his trial the individual brought this up to the Town informing them the link wasn’t working.
“I understand the need to enforce parking in the town, but because the ticket was issued on a quiet Sunday Morning at the edge of the downtown I thought I would do a little research. It happened to pay off in my favour. I’m also pretty sure the town appreciates the issues I pointed out so they could be corrected.