Neighbours cry foul over Old Ottawa East basketball nets
OTTAWA -- Ottawa Bylaw is calling foul on residents for leaving their basketball nets out on city property along a residential street in Old Ottawa East.
Bylaw officers issued four verbal warnings and two written warnings to residents on Drummond Street Wednesday morning after receiving complaints about basketball nets left on the City right-of-way while not in use.
Residents living on Drummond Street tell CTV News Ottawa they received a visit from a Bylaw Services officer Wednesday morning, telling them to move the basketball net back onto their property. There are four basketball nets located along a two-block section of Drummond Street, off Clegg Street.
15-year-old Charles Asselin has been playing basketball one-hour a day during the summer.
"Certainly during quarantine, I have to go outside because there's nothing to do inside. So that's my only way of getting outside and getting some fresh air," Asselin said Wednesday.
"When it's taken away from me, it kind of ruins the fun of going outside."
Asselin says an Ottawa Bylaw officer visited his home on Wednesday to issue a warning.
"Apparently, there was a complaint and the Bylaw officer came to my door and told me I had to take the basketball net out on the side of the house because people were complaining about it."
Ottawa Bylaw Services tells CTV News Ottawa it received four complaints on Aug. 12 about basketball nets left on the City right-of-way on Drummond Street while not in use.
"The Use and Care of Roads Bylaw prohibits individuals from encumbering a highway by any means. This includes leaving basketball or hockey nets on the road or on the City right-of-way," said a statement from Tania McCumber, Acting Director of Bylaw and Regulatory Services.
"Four verbal warnings and two written warning were issued reminding residents to remove the basketball nets from City property when they are not in use."
The "right-of-way" on a municipal street is the portion of city-owned land at the end of a property.
"We've had them here for two and a half years, never an issue," said John Hobbs after receiving a written warning about the basketball net.
"We will have to move it back. We don't really have any choice at this point. And the challenge is that we are going to have to get out and lift it and that takes the spontaneity and the joy of it quite frankly."
Hobbs says his net is weighed down with sand and bricks, and won't be easily moved by one person.
McCumber says the fine for encumbering a highway is $385, Ottawa Bylaw and Regulatory Services "applies a progressive enforcement model, which includes verbal warnings and working with the defendants to obtain voluntary compliance before a ticket is issued."