Council right to put brakes to bylaw
Wednesday, Aug 20, 2014 12:13 pm
Town councillors made the right move on Monday to put the brakes on a proposed bylaw to change playground and school zones in Okotoks.
It’s now doing what it should have done at the start.
The proposed bylaw would have seen times for playground and school zone speed limits synchronized to start at 7:30 a.m. and end at 9 p.m.
Council is instead sending the issue to the Town’s public safety committee to get input from RCMP and Okotoks Municipal Enforcement.
It’s an important step council has overlooked through the process so far to get input from the very people who will be tasked with enforcing the new rules. The question is now expected to go back in front of council again this fall.
Some may debate the need to make the changes in the first place, but it’s the right thing to do to harmonize school and playground zones.
The question is what’s a reasonable time for them to end.
School zone speed limits aren’t in affect over the summer months. Yet, many schools have playgrounds that attract young people year round. As well, there can still be students at schools after the 5 p.m. during the school year. The current rules that see playground zones remain in affect until one hour after sunset can be confusing and should change.
The Town needs to decide what works best for Okotoks to establish a clear, predictable standard for drivers year round.
This is where getting feedback from RCMP, municipal enforcement, the community and the schools themselves is crucial to make the right decision.