Penticton council to ponder pricey tickets for electrical utility violations as incidents rise

Tickets for utility violations

Penticton city council will ponder expanding bylaw officers' abilities to include ticketing for electrical utility violations.

At Tuesday's meeting, council will discuss whether tickets between $450 and $1,000 are appropriate for certain breaches of local electrical bylaws, which have become increasingly problematic.

"Over the past few years there have been an increasing number of incidents where damage to Penticton Electric Utility’s equipment or other violations of the City’s Electrical Bylaw has occurred," reads a report from staff.

"Without the ability to issue a ticket, responding staff are limited in how these incidents can be addressed and limited in ability for cost recovery for the City from damages."

The following contraventions would be included under the new ticketing plan:

  1. Failure to grant the City’s employees or agents full access to the Customer’s Equipment and the Penticton Electric Utility Equipment at all reasonable times for meter reading and testing, removal, installation, etc.
  2. Cause damage to city utility equipment by making unauthorized alterations
  3. Cause damage to city utility equipment by allowing malfunction
  4. Cause damage to city utility equipment by allowing trees, other vegetation or any other object on private property that interferes
  5. Causing or permitting damage or defacement of city utility equipment
  6. Not complying with any provision of the bylaw

Staff are recommending that council give first, second and third reading to both bylaws with the intent that they will be adopted at a later meeting.

Council will discuss the matter Tuesday.

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