Diagonal Lawn-cutting Banned in Ward 8

Ward 8 residents angry over ban on diagonal lawn-cutting

residential-lawn-care

This house will be fined $103

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.

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Council Hot on LRT, Hotter on Scooter Lanes

Segregated Mobility Scooter Lanes Beat Out Bikes

English: I took this image myself at the Austr...

Mobility Scooter Race in Gage Park (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Maybe it’s the slippery slope down the mountain that got Councillor Terry Whitehead thinking about designated lanes, but at Monday’s council meeting, he wore his heart on his sleeve.  “I love bikes, bike rights, but we have to prioritize and Hamiltonian mobility scooter drivers need a segregated lane.  Period.”

Council narrowly voted in favour of a proposal to install a segregated scooter lane for scooters, stretching from Queen St to Parkdale Ave along Main and King St.

Councillor Jackson: “It’s all about equity.”

Councillor Tom Jackson put it plainly,  “I’m over the moon about bike lanes – over the moon! – but for every bicycle downtown, a recent study showed, there are three mobility scooters.  It’s all about equity.”

Councillor Brian McHattie sees things differently.  “Bikes are ridiculous.  We’ve moved on and we have gas-powered titans at our glove tips, now.  I’m talking about cars!  I only am voting for mobility scooters because they’re the most affordable form of Hamilton transit since weight-based bus fares kicked in.”

Allegations by community groups that organized crime is behind the move, given their interest in illegal scooter race gambling, have not been confirmed.  No crime bosses could be reached for comment.

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