Bylaw officers offering fewer warnings and more tickets

Tyler
Tyler Clarke
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Offering fewer warnings and more tickets, the city’s bylaw enforcement officers have their sights set on sending a message this year.

 

Police are seen patrolling Central Avenue in downtown Prince Albert on Tuesday, providing friendly faces to law enforcement. Seen from left is summer student Justin McLennan, Cst. Rowden, and Special Cst. Maier.

Offering fewer warnings and more tickets, the city’s bylaw enforcement officers have their sights set on sending a message this year.

“We really stepped up enforcement when it comes to tickets,” acting bylaw enforcement manager Suzanne Stubbs said. “We’re not being lenient anymore, we’re hitting up everything.”

The first six months of 2012 have seen an almost 60 per cent spike in municipal bylaw tickets handed out compared to this time last year. This represents an additional 74 tickets, bringing the total as of June 30 to 199.

Of these tickets, many have stemmed from violations in the city’s downtown core, mainly as a result of increased enforcement.

“Right now we’ve got downtown visibility,” Stubbs explained. “We’ve got bylaw there as well as foot patrol.”

Complemented by a summer student, the foot patrols take place throughout the summer months, adding friendly faces to downtown enforcement.

Infractions in the city’s downtown core include crossing the street at intersections in spite of the glowing red hand indicating it’s unsafe to do so, spitting and riding bicycles and skateboards on the sidewalks.

“We’ve been hitting that hard,” Stubbs said of these means of transportation in the downtown area, noting that enforcement on this front has resulted some success.

“Now, when you go downtown they’re on the street, so that’s good,” she said.

Mainly elsewhere in the city, one area of bylaw infractions that stick out is related to pets. These infractions mostly include dogs off leash and cats and dogs without city-issued pet licences.

Pet licences ensure the safety and security of cats and dogs, ensuring bylaw officers and those at the SPCA are able to easily find pet owners and return them home.

We’re not being lenient anymore, we’re hitting up everything. Acting bylaw enforcement manager Suzanne Stubbs

Licences for cats and dogs cost $20 for neutered animals or those less than six months in age. Non-neutered licences cost $40 — an amount going up to $60 next year.

As for the bylaw preventing dogs from roaming, it’s a safety issue for both dogs and the public, Stubbs said.

With the bylaw entering its seventh year, Stubbs noted that some people don’t seem to be getting the message.

“There are even people that we gave tickets to three times,” she said. “You’d think they’d learn their lesson after one.”

So far this year, 46 tickets related to pet infractions have been issued — a 70.4 per cent jump from last year’s 27 at this time of year.

Property-related infractions are down this year, with 58 unsightly properties reported so far this year. At this point of the year in 2011, 80 had been reported. 

“People are really starting to maintain their properties,” Stubbs noted.

Should an unsightly property be noted by a bylaw enforcement officer or brought to the attention by a member of the public, the first step is a letter of warning, which can be potentially followed through with legal action should the property owner not comply.

Although “unsightly” is up to bylaw officers’ discretion, Stubbs said that it’s pretty obvious when a property is unsightly.

Bylaw infractions can be called in to the city’s bylaw enforcement department at 953-4222. 

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  • Tyler Clarke
    July 10, 2012 - 00:58

    Attn: Honest Joe, More on the city's latest batch of crime statistics is addressed in the following article. The above article is strictly bylaw enforcement. http://www.paherald.sk.ca/Local/Justice/2012-07-06/article-3024136/City-sheds-another-8.6-per-cent-in-overall-crime/1

  • Honest Betty
    July 09, 2012 - 21:23

    I was born and raised in Prince Albert and while I no longer reside there much of my family does so I regularly do come back to visit. I am totally shocked that Prince Albert's finest have the time to do this type of thing to its fine citizens while they allow the types they really should be policing run wild. My Mom constantly has her yard and property vandilized and the police have no answers. In fact when you call them they don't even take the time to come and have a look at the property. They claim they are too busy. They never seem to be able to catch the perpetrators. Now I know what they are too busy doing...ticketing jaywalkers and people who ride bikes and skateboards on sidewalks! Is that the most important crime in Prince Albert? I say not. The real problem in the downtown core is the drunks and beggers crawling all over the place. It has been that way for years. I personally avoid the downtown core when I come back to visit especially at night for that very reason. What this smells of is more of the same from the current administration running the city. Its all about soaking cash from the citizens. Taxes keep going higher yet no one is being held accountable for where all the money is going. Time for a new Mayor and Council I think...before everyone in P.A. goes broke..

  • honest Joe
    July 08, 2012 - 16:56

    Awesome to see the Police have everything under control in the down-town core. I mean we have had a real problem with jaywalking and the likes of late. Now maybe next year someone can suggest that they take a look at some of the smaller problems facing down town, like public drunkenness, and inter venous drug use.