The Draft Streets By-law Public Consultation information has been posted to the Speak Up Sarnia community forum page. 

Public consultation is being held to provide a forum for interested citizens and all stakeholders; residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional, that the By-Law pertains to. More information can be found online: https://www.speakupsarnia.ca/streets-by-law.

Comments received will assist staff in completing the review and making informed recommendations on amendments to the proposed Streets By-Law. Written comments are requested to be submitted no later than Friday April 9, 2021, in order to be included in the final report, which will be considered by Council at its meeting to be held on Monday, May 3, 2021.

Throughout Sarnia the Streets By-law regulates activities taking place within the municipally owned Right-of-Way by;

  • Ensuring activities taking place are permitted, and documented
  • Establishes a list of prohibited activities and actions
  • Identifies requirements for the user and authority (City) to maintain a safe environment for all users
  • Outlines reporting requirements for works taking place within the Right-of-Way
  • Provides a reference point for members of the public
  • Identifying clear direction for enforcement purposes
  • Enabling the authority to monitor and control activity

The purpose of the Streets By-law is to protect; public health and interest, investments in infrastructure, workers, and all other stakeholders. A comprehensive review of the original By-Law, No. 145 of 1991, found it to be outdated, cumbersome for interpretation and ultimately unable to effectively serve its purpose to full effect.

The proposed update will see changes incorporated for the purpose of;

  • Reflecting current best practice established throughout many other municipalities in Ontario
  • Providing better means and clarity for enforcement
  • Consolidating amendments from 1991 to 2021 into a single source document
  • Introducing a set fine schedule for non-compliance
  • Avoiding unnecessary use of resources to further amend the By-Law piece by piece
  • Improving the City’s ability to protect our infrastructure and the interest of our tax base

It is important to note that maintaining a safe and well maintained Right-of-Way is in the best interest of the community as a whole, and the ability to effectively and efficiently enforce specific negligence is an important improvement to the By-Law as it exists today.

There are a number of frequent and recurring issues that are governed by the existing Streets By-Law. These issues do require significant staff time to pursue, particularly in cases of repetitive non-compliance. Some of the most common transgressions include;

  • Landscaping obstructions – overhanging trees, shrubs, vegetation
  • Failure to maintain the boulevard – overgrowth, destruction
  • Discharge of water onto the right-of-way – pool water discharge
  • Hoarding permit violations – deposit of debris, or failure to obtain a permit