Ward 8 residents angry over ban on diagonal lawn-cutting
Terry Whitehead has seen enough. From the sidewalk, from the street, and especially from up in the air, he’s sick and tired of how unkempt his west Mountain ward looks.
The veteran councillor was flying in to John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport last week, on his way back from a sludge review committee powwow in Calgary, when something struck his eye and almost made him dizzy.
“I looked out the window down at my ward, and I see all these lines going every which way. People are cutting their lawns any way they want,” he said, “and it’s got to stop. It looks terrible.”
To that end, White has decided to ban the practice of diagonal lawn-cutting in Ward 8. Residents will be allowed to cut the grass only on a 90-degree angle (up and down, or sideways).
Break the “Go Straight” bylaw, and it’s now a $103 fine. “Let’s face it, this is not the prettiest ward in town, ” said Whitehead, who couldn’t, off the top of his head, figure out what the cost of enforcement might be, but he hopes the initiative is revenue-neutral. “We need the residents pitching in. We want a handsome ward.”
The move has angered at least one Ward 8 resident. Doug Nomberstreat began boldly cutting his lawn diagonally in the 80s. His neighbours initially recoiled and thought of him as a “Westdale snob”, he said, but they’ve all since come around to the flashy landscaping technique.
“Now it’s illegal,” Nomberstreat said with a shrug. “What next? Colour-co-ordinated driveways?”
Whitehead said he’d be willing to look into that.