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Riverview Council talks traffic bylaws and recreational road use

By Tara Clow May 16, 2024 | 12:34 PM

A letter from a concerned resident over street hockey and by-laws prompted discussion amongst Riverview Town Councillors.

“The resident had reached out to request that council potentially explore looking at making some changes to the traffic bylaw in relation to recreational use on streets,” Mayor Andrew Leblanc told Riverview Town Council at their meeting on Monday.

Councillor-at-Large Cecile Cassista expressed concerns about children playing on the streets because of past experiences in her neighbourhood with motorists driving recklessly and speeding.  She would not support any changes to the bylaws.

Councillor Stephen Gouzoules had other suggestions, “I agree that the safety of children should be the number one priority when we think about this bylaw, but I’d like to look into this to see if there’s any type of compromise while maintaining public safety and the safety of the children and allow certain recreational use on the streets.”

He introduced a motion to Riverview Town Councillors that read, “That Council give direction to Town staff to review and investigate options of other communities with respect to the Traffic by-law and report back to Council.”

Councillor Wayne Bennett seconded the motion but felt the bylaw should remain the same.

“How many of us grew up playing hockey or basketball on the street? I think that the kids should be allowed to play hockey and basketball on the street. I would like to go down that road.  Don’t touch the bylaw, and let the kids play.”

Councillor John Coughlan raised concerns about how bylaw officers were treated, “I was very disappointed to hear of the incident. A town employee just doing his job, trying to remain calm and he was treated with disdain and very rude gestures. It got to social media, and it was a pretty, pretty nasty bit of a business.  I just want to go on record as saying I think everybody should be treated with respect. Our employees are doing their job and shouldn’t be treated this way.”

The motion passed with only Councillor Cassista opposed.

Cassista questioned why Council was putting staff through the research if they all appeared in favour of bylaws staying the same.

“I think that there are other important things that they could be working on.  If we are fine with the bylaw, let’s leave it that way and allow the By-law officers to do their work,” Cassista stated.