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Monday, October 26, 2009

The whims of bylaw enforcement

What good are anonymous tips when the city can't get the most obvious problem fixed?

Posted By on Mon, Oct 26, 2009 at 10:26 AM

There's no doubt that bylaw enforcement in Halifax is arbitrary, causes unneeded hassle and embarrassment for homeowners and is very possibly corrupt, in that the anonymous complaint process can lead to painting companies trolling for business by reporting properties.

But more than that, the process evidently doesn't work. Here's a picture of Mitchell's Environmental Treasures at 2183 Gottingen Street:

met_gottingen_tn.jpg

The property has been the target of bylaw enforcement for at least five years; the roof collapsed several years ago, and neighbours complain that it is a breeding ground for rats. And yet, here the building sits, a blight on the north end.

I suggest that the entire bylaw enforcement process be suspended until this one building is properly addressed. Until the city can fix this property, it has no business telling anyone to scrape off some flaking paint.

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