Callander fire department permanently enforcing bylaws
North Bay Nugget

Callander’s fire department is now permanently in charge of bylaw enforcement, which will be carried out by the chief and deputy fire chief.

The development is the result of town council making a pilot project from 2019 permanent.

When the community’s bylaw enforcement officer retired last year, Fire Chief Todd Daley it triggered a discussion of how to continue the service. The bylaw enforcement officer put in 20 hours a week, four hours a day.

Daley is a full-time fire chief and Deputy Fire Chief Jim Warren was working two days a week at the time.

Following last year’s pilot project, council agreed at its last meeting to transfer the work carried out by its bylaw enforcement officer to Warren, resulting in him being available four days a week.

As a retired North Bay police officer, Daley says Warren has the expertise needed to carry out bylaw enforcement.

He says increasing Warren’s hours gave the department the flexibility it needs to conduct bylaw enforcement.

The arrangement, he says, does not increase costs to the municipality but rather saves some money and creates additional efficiencies.

For example, he says, the former bylaw enforcement officer used his own vehicle, resulting in mileage costs.

Daley says that’s not the case with the fire department and “our mileage cost has dropped at least $2,000 a year.”

In addition, Daley says, he and the deputy are already on the road covering the area previously overseen by the bylaw enforcement officer.

“So, instead of two people driving over the same terrain, it’s one person,” he says.

Bylaw enforcement is complaints-driven.

Daley says he and Warren will not actively seek out people breaking the law to issue tickets. Rather, they will respond to written complaints or act if they witness an infraction taking place.

He uses parking infractions as an example.

Daley says the first course of action is to talk to the person to educate them about the rules.

However, he adds, if no one is around and they can’t talk to the driver then there’s no alternative but to issue a ticket.

Daley says one area he and Warren will be sticklers on is enforcing handicap parking zones.

However, he says it’s all about education and he understands that sometimes people with a handicap forget to display their parking permit.

When that happens and the driver comes in to talk about the ticket, Daley says the fire department can withdraw the ticket once it’s verified the person simply forgot to display the permit.

“But if they keep doing it, then the sympathy factor is gone and they’ll be ticketed,” warns Daley.

“But again, we’re not out there trying to nail people,”  he says.

“You need order in a community and if people parked wherever they wanted, it would be chaotic.  So they need to comply because there are only so many parking spaces.”

Daley and Warren will oversee bylaw enforcement rules such as noise, parking and animal control.

Daley says planning, zoning and building enforcement have their own personnel to oversee laws in those areas.