Car­bon­ear coun­cil­lor irate over park­ing tick­ets

Kennedy con­fronts mu­nic­i­pal en­force­ment of­fi­cer at fundraiser

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BY AN­DREW ROBIN­SON

A Car­bon­ear coun­cil­lor ad­mit­ted to throwing park­ing tick­ets at a town em­ployee dur­ing a re­cent fundraiser for the lo­cal fire depart­ment.

Coun. David Kennedy said he wasn’t the only per­son up­set with the mu­nic­i­pal en­force­ment of­fi­cer Gord Par­sons at the event, a ball hockey tour­na­ment held June 5 in mem­ory of mur­der vic­tim Quinn Butt.

Car­bon­ear fire­fight­ers were the first peo­ple to re­spond to an emer­gency at a house in April where the five-year-old was found.

The is­sue that day was ve­hi­cles parked along Val­ley Road. Par­sons is­sued a num­ber of tick­ets dur­ing the event.

Ac­cord­ing to Kennedy, Quinn’s fam­ily was among those to re­ceive tick­ets.

The coun­cil­lor’s ve­hi­cle was also tick­eted.

“To me, there are more im- por­tant safety is­sues, and a no park­ing sign just on the side of the road, I’m not sure why they’re there,” Kennedy said dur­ing last Mon­day’s coun­cil meet­ing. “The curbs on the sides of Val­ley Road are big­ger than an aw­ful lot of roads in Car­bon­ear, and we don’t see (signs) all over Car­bon­ear.”

Kennedy de­cided to take mat­ters into his own hands.

“In any case ap­par­ently, I broke the law, be­cause there’s the tick­ets,” he said, show­ing them to other coun­cil mem­bers at the meet­ing.

“I took them off the ve­hi­cles and I threw them at the en­force­ment of­fi­cer, and then he put them back. So as he put them back, I took them and I told him, ‘If you keep putting them on ve­hi­cles, I’ll take them off.’ So in any case, he told me I was com­mit­ting a crim­i­nal of­fence, and I told him to call the po­lice.

“My pa­tience were shot, partly be­cause it was such a long week or­ga­niz­ing the event, and then of course you have so many peo­ple dis­grun­tled. Peo­ple were scur­ry­ing to move their ve­hi­cles as quickly as they could.”

Par­sons de­clined to com­ment on the in­ci­dent when The Com­pass reached him last week.

Kennedy claims sport­ing events in Car­bon­ear do not re­ceive the same sort of lee­way other events at­tract­ing large crowds do when it comes to the en­force­ment of park­ing reg­u­la­tions.

He later added park­ing in the area sur­round­ing the Car­bon­ear Recre­ation Com­plex is in­ad­e­quate.

“It’s un­for­tu­nate that such a suc­cess­ful event that had 28 teams, once again many trav­el­ling from down the shore bring­ing all kinds of peo­ple in, go­ing to our dif­fer­ent gro­cery stores, fast food (restau­rants) and ev­ery­thing else through­out the day, gas sta­tions — it gets tar­nished by go­ing in and giv­ing out tick­ets.

“And it hap­pens all the time. It hap­pened last year at the Har­vest Run.”

Mayor Ge­orge Butt Jr. sym­pa­thized with Kennedy’s frus­tra­tions, but also noted the en­force­ment of­fi­cer has a job to do as well.

“So in any case, he told me I was com­mit­ting a crim­i­nal of­fence, and I told him to call the po­lice.” Coun. David Kennedy

“We put the signs in there — no park­ing. So he’s just re­ally fol­low­ing our reg­u­la­tions. This is only early in the sea­son, so there’s go­ing to be a dozen of th­ese things. We’re go­ing to have to de­cide to do some­thing.”

Coun. Ray Noel said there is a le­git­i­mate is­sue with get­ting emer­gency ve­hi­cles through the area if other cars and trucks are parked on both sides of Val­ley Road.

“I think it’s un­for­tu­nate we do is­sue tick­ets some­times,” he said. “I don’t think it’s for us to tell some­body as to when you en­force the rules and when you don’t, but I think that we could have and should in the fu­ture pro­vide some sup­port to the or­ga­niz­ers … Even just to di­rect traf­fic so that th­ese com­pli­ca­tions don’t take place.”

It was later sug­gested the town should look into the pos­si­bil­ity of ac­quir­ing nearby Crown land to use for park­ing space or fill in ad­join­ing cul­verts to al­low for ve­hi­cles to park there.

Kennedy

Par­sons

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