Evening fishing could become permanent in Oakville

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Published August 3, 2023 at 4:37 pm

Town Council recently approved evening fishing within designated areas of the east pier in Bronte and east/west piers in Oakville. PEXELS PHOTO

A new evening fishing pilot program in Oakville could become permanent on the count of one thing, says Mayor Rob Burton.

“As long as they behave,” Burton said of the fishers in his monthly chat with inhalton.com’s Khaled Iwamura. “There’s a reason they got banned, which was people like to walk on these piers and they (fishers) weren’t good at sharing.”

Town Council recently approved evening fishing within designated areas of the east pier in Bronte and east/west piers in Oakville.

The pilot program began on Tuesday (Aug. 1) and runs through until Oct. 15. Fishers can now toss a line between 9 p.m. and midnight.

Fishing within the Bronte and Oakville harbours during the summer months had always been restricted due to a safety conflict with recreational boaters, kayaks, canoes and heavy pedestrian use of piers and lakefront walkways.

After the town noticed an increasing interest in recreational fishing during the COVID-19 pandemic, Ward 1 Regional and Town Councillor Sean O’Meara put forward a motion for the pilot program.

The Oakville mayor would like to see the program become a permanent one, but he says that won’t happen if fishers aren’t careful of the people around them on the piers.

“It’s like this in life,” he said. “You have a freedom or whatever and you abuse it, you’re likely to lose it.”

Previously, evening fishing was restricted from May 15 to Oct. 15 in those locations.

“The problem has always been how do I get people to be respectful of each other when they’re in crowds,” said Burton.

Burton hopes people will be respectful and everyone can enjoy themselves down at the local piers.

Bad behaviour ruins it for everyone and it’s no different than a story he read in a Toronto daily discussing how badly behaved movie audiences are now

“It’s cellphones and noisy food, and you can’t watch the movie,” said the Oakville mayor. “The people next to you are busy taking snapshots of the screen no less. It’s amazing.”

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