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Complaints about dirt bikers spurs Puslinch council to work on parking bylaw

Mayor James Seeley said he's received complaints about people parking on Calfass road to go dirt biking on crown land
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Keegan Kozolanka/GuelphToday file photo

PUSLINCH – Puslinch mayor James Seeley is looking to combat a swarm of people using ATVs and dirt bikes on provincial Crown land.

At Wednesday’s council meeting, Seeley explained he’s been receiving complaints of numerous vehicles parked on Calfass Road and crossing private land to get to the Crown land. 

“This happens every weekend, all weekend and it even happens through the week,” Seeley said to council. 

When he took a drive on a recent weekend, Seeley said he the cars parked for himself and about 15-20 people riding on dirt bikes. He noted the land lacked enough no trespassing signs for serious action.

“These people that trespass know the rules,” Seeley said to council. “They know if it’s not signed, even if it’s private property, that’s not enforceable by police.”

It was brought to his attention that updating the town’s parking bylaw would help with enforcement. The mayor said the OPP recently rode around on an ATV in the area to familiarize themselves, He believed they were going to mark entrances with no trespassing symbols to further their ability for enforcement. 

Seeley acknowledged this was more than just about people parking to go off-roading. Last year, he had complaints about buses and tractor trailers parked in other subdivisions. 

CAO Glenn Schwendinger said changing the parking bylaw, which hasn’t been updated since the mid-80s, would take time and impact other existing work. However, the CAO said it would be a good time to bring this forward.

“We are doing some updates to a few other bylaws that have enforcement aspects,” Schwendinger said to council. “When we make updates and refinements that include the same type of enforcement, it’s better if there’s consistency among all of the bylaws.”

More information regarding scheduling of the bylaws is expected at the next Puslinch council meeting.