Grass that needs to be mowed and cars that are parked illegally: these are some of the issues that Thorold residents like to call in about.
The City’s by-law department received 2610 complaints last year, according to a new City Hall report.
1026 of those complaints pertained to yards, while 664 complaints pertained to parking, and 537 complaints pertained to the Residential Rental Licensing Program.
Issues concerning fencing, graffiti, noise, swimming pools, property standards, snow removal, signs, yard parking, zoning, and public nuisance were reported significantly less, with each category coming in with under 100 complaints.
Parking complaints have steadily risen over the last few years, from merely 209 complaints in 2016 to 664 complaints in 2023.
When it comes to parking enforcement, 3898 tickets were issued in Thorold last year, which is 1000 more when compared to 2022, and 2000 more when compared to 2019.
In spite of the city’s known problems with the local student population, the by-law department only receives between 40 to 80 noise complaints a year.
“The majority of the noise complaints that we receive are after City hours,” said Director of Development Services, Jason Simpson, during Tuesday’s City Council meeting. “We are currently working on improving that relationship with our partner at the Niagara Regional Police Service to mitigate these type of issues moving forward.”
Councillor Henry D’Angela asked if it was possible to bring down the hammer on those properties that receive repeated complaints.
“Where we have constant problems with properties we should actually be making sure they’re part of a route where we’re paying extra attention to them,” agreed Mayor Terry Ugulini.
But unfortunately there are no resources for such a program.
“I don’t think we have the manpower to accommodate that right now,” said Simpson. “We do have methods in place currently where problematic properties with recurring issues do result in more aggressive punitive penalties more often."
So for now, all residents can do is keep complaining.