The Municipal Law Enforcement Officer has a variety of responsibilities including the enforcement of parking, animal control, noise complaints, illegal dumping, property standards, zoning and sign bylaws, as well as being a livestock valuer. Other bylaws which impose regulations on the general public are also enforced.
Filing a Complaint
All complaints must be submitted to the Bylaw Enforcement Department in writing, either hard copy or via email with the complainants contact information and nature of alleged complaint. Anonymous complaints will not be accepted. All personal information is collected in accordance with the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.
The Municipality of Hastings Highlands has prescribed property standards for the maintenance and occupancy of property within the Municipality of Hastings Highlands. All property owners are required to repair and maintain their properties in compliance with the minimum maintenance standards included in the Hastings Highlands Property Standards Bylaw 2018-086. These standards are put in place to protect the health and safety of occupants/tenants as well as the general public.
When someone puts waste materials on municipal or private property without the permission of the property owner it is considered illegal dumping. It is illegal to dump garbage on any roadside and this includes outside of any Waste Disposal Site during closed hours. The Clean Municipality Bylaw 2018-074 and provincial environmental protection laws apply to anyone who dumps garbage illegally. IT IS A CRIME!
Winter Parking Restrictions
No person shall park a vehicle on any of the streets, highways, boulevards or any municipal parking lot in the Municipality of Hastings Highlands in such a manner that interferes with the clearing of snow between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 7:00 a.m. from October 15th to April 15th. This is related to Parking Bylaw 2012-068. The fine associated with this offence is $300.00 and your vehicle may be towed at your own expense.
You should be aware that there is a minimum $300.00 fine for the misuse of an accessible parking permit or a designated accessible parking space.
The Sign Bylaw regulates signs and other advertising devices within the Municipality of Hastings Highlands. Any sign that is erected or altered in contravention of Bylaw 2016-060, shall be removed by the Municipality at the owner’s expense. The person who contravenes this bylaw is guilty of an offence and upon conviction is liable to a fine under the Provincial Offences Act.
The Bylaw Department is responsible for enforcing the Municipal Noise Bylaw 2010-006. Fireworks are regulated under the Noise Bylaw and shall not be discharged between the hours of 12:00 midnight and 6:00 a.m. For noise complaints outside of normal working hours, contact the O.P.P., if necessary.
Regulating the Keeping of Dogs in Hastings Highlands
The Municipality of Hastings Highlands enacts Bylaw 2019-098 for the purpose of prohibiting dogs “being at large”; for the purpose of requiring the removal of dog waste; and for the purpose of generally regulating the keeping of dogs in the Municipality.
Administrative Monetary Penalty System
The Administrative Monetary Penalties System (A.M.P.S.) is an emerging approach to dealing with minor bylaw infractions in a manner that is fair, effective and efficient. This approach has been adopted by numerous municipalities, the province and the federal government and is designed to streamline the enforcement process and increase compliance. Disputing a “ticket” through the current court system can be very costly for the municipality and the individual who is disputing the fine.
A Penalty Notice is the same as a “ticket” except that it requires payment of a penalty instead of a fine. The Penalty Notice is issued by a Municipal Law Enforcement Officer to an individual when they have committed a bylaw infraction.
A.M.P.S. transfers bylaw disputes from the courtroom to the municipality through the use of a Screening and a Hearing Officer. The Screening and Hearing Officer is able to modify, cancel, or affirm penalties. This approach aids in reducing congestion in the courts as well as providing a more local and accessible dispute resolution system for the public.
Penalty Notices issued under A.M.P.S does not cost more than traditional fines. However, in certain cases, additional administrative fees may be applied to the original penalty amount. For instance, additional administrative fees are applied to late payments, the failure to attend a scheduled review with a Screening or Hearing Officer, and Ministry of Transportation (M.T.O.) searches.
Screening Request to Review Penalty
The Municipality of Hastings Highlands offers the convenience of scheduling an appointment with a Screening Officer to review your Penalty Notice under the Municipality’s Administrative Penalty System.
The Hastings Highlands Bylaw Department investigates damages to livestock caused by wildlife. The Ontario Wildlife Damage Compensation Program (OWDC) provides financial assistance to producers whose livestock, poultry and honey bees have been damaged by wildlife. When a producer (the owner of livestock, poultry or bees) believes that they have suffered a loss of livestock, poultry or bees due to predation the owner should immediately notify the municipal Livestock Valuer, Dawn Bowers at (613) 338-2811 Ext. 235 or via email at email@example.com
The Livestock Valuer will immediately make a full investigation and submit a written report to the Municipal Clerk within 10 days. A copy of the report is also provided to the producer of livestock, poultry or bees.
The OWDC requires that a producer meet certain criteria to be eligible under the program. Some of the requirements are as follows:
- Be a sole proprietor, corporation, partnership or unincorporated association
- Have a valid Farm Business Registration number
- Have a Premises Identification number
- The weight of poultry injured or killed must be more than 25 kilograms
- Must demonstrate to the valuer that reasonable effort has been taken to prevent incidences of wildlife damage to livestock, poultry, beehives, bee colonies or beehive related equipment to be eligible for a claim
Animal Control is about bringing pets home safely and providing them with shelter when a home cannot be found. If dogs are found at large, contact Bylaw Enforcement, a Part I Provincial Offence Notice or a Part III Provincial Summons could be issued. If a dog is located and placed in the Municipal Pound the owner faces extra costs. If you have any concerns regarding the welfare of an animal, please contact the Animal Human Society at their new 24/7 Animal Welfare Hotline 1-833-9ANIMAL (1-833-926-4625). If you need to report an animal attack, please contact your local Police Service.
Sick or Injured Wildlife
If you encounter wildlife that is sick or injured, wildlife that poses a threat to humans or domestic animals, or wildlife that displays signs or symptoms of rabies, do not touch or handle the animal. Contact the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) at 1-800-667-1940 or visit their website at https://www.ontario.ca/page/rescue-sick-injured-or-abandoned-wild-animal.
The Municipality of Hastings Highlands does not provide trapping or relocation services for nuisance wildlife. Wildlife-proofing your home or business is the most effective way to deter nuisance wildlife. Trapping and relocating wildlife is only a temporary solution as other animals tend to relocate into the area.
Coyotes have adapted to urban areas and it is quite normal to see coyotes. Coyotes are generally shy animals that avoid confrontation. They are also opportunistic animals that are drawn to places where they can find food easily. If you encounter a coyote, do not turn your back or run away. Instead, remain calm and back away slowly. If you’re out for a walk bring a whistle to frighten any approaching animals. Always walk your pets on a leash and keep cats inside. More information about coyotes can be obtained through the MNRF website at https://www.ontario.ca/page/wildlife-and-nature.
If you encounter a bear in your neighbourhood and are concerned about an imminent threat to public safety, call 9-1-1. In a non-emergency situation, call the Province’s Bear Wise reporting line at 1 (866) 514-BEAR (2327) (between April 1st and November 30th). Between Dec 1st and March 31st, please contact the MNRF . Further information is available through the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry Bear Wise website https://www.ontario.ca/page/prevent-bear-encounters-bear-wise.
Dawn Bowers – Hastings Highlands Bylaw Enforcement Officer
Phone: (613) 338-2811 Ext. 235
For after-hours noise complaints, please contact the Ontario Provincial Police at 1-888-310-1122.