Oakville's Craziest Town Bylaws

Bylaws are those rules set out in city or town by your local government as to what is allowed, not allowed and how you can do certain activities. They oversee everything from what residents do and how businesses conduct themselves in the municipality.

Society needs rules and regulations, but sometimes by-laws can sound rather peculiar. What inhalton.com has defined as ‘crazy’ is not so much that the law exists, but sometimes that such a law needed to be on the books at all.

Here are some of the more interesting bylaws in the Town of Oakville.


Prohibited Animals Bylaw

Animals are great companions, especially for those of you who live alone. But according to the town bylaws governing animal ownership, there are certain types of animals not allowed by residents to keep as pets, such as:

  • Cattle such as goats, sheep, pig, deer and elk.

  • Tigers, leopards, cougars, lions, and lynxes.

  • Koalas, kangaroos, possums, and wallabies.

  • Horses, donkeys, jackasses, mules, zebras, and (unfortunately for those of you who have little girls at home)…ponies.

  • Alligators, crocodiles, gavials, and caimans.

  • Terrapins, tortoises, and turtles (except turtles derived from a self-sustaining captive population).

Oh my indeed!

Is it just me, but do you really need bylaws to tell you that it’s not a good idea to keep a crocodile in the house, especially if your bathtub is the only place big enough to hold it?


Fence Bylaw

If you thought raising a fence on your property in Oakville was easy peasy, then think again.

As the above link indicates, there is an entire bylaw outlining what you would require if you’re looking to redo that fence on your property. This particular bylaw was approved in 2011, and what you would require is:

  • A $125.00 application fee.

  • The name, address and telephone number of the applicant.

  • Reference to the section of the by-law from which the exemption is being sought.

  • A statement whether the proposed fence or privacy screen will be temporary or permanent.

  • Reasons why the exemption is being sought

  • A property survey, site plan, and specifications pertaining to the description of the fence, construction and installation of the fence.

  • Proof of notification to abutting neighbours by personal service or prepaid first class mail which indicates specifications of the fence, reasons for the exemption request, and objections must be forwarded to the Director of Planning Services within 10 days.


Taxi License Bylaw: The Driver’s Duties

There are strigent guidelines on how taxicab drivers are to own, maintain and license their vehicles, not to mention what kind of people they are allowed to pick up. Upon reviewing the section in the bylaw outlining their duties, there is an interesting provision when it comes to taxi drivers picking up the first person they see:

Every licensed driver shall, except where there is a previous order or engagement, serve the first person requiring the service of the taxicab at any place within the Town, at any time by day or night, except when the person

  • Is intoxicated or disorderly.
  • Refuses to give the person’s destination.
  • Is in the possession of an animal other than a medical aid animal.
  • Is eating or drinking any food or beverage.
  • Has not paid a previous fare.
  • Is, in the opinion of the driver, unable or unwilling to pay the fare and has been unable or unwilling to satisfy the driver that they have the funds to pay the fare.
  • Is a grossly unclean person

I don’t think I’ve ever heard of a rule that says you can’t be eating or drinking when you’re about to get into a cab, and what exactly constitutes as “a grossly unclean person”? Someone that is literally covered in mud with his pants halfway down? I wish they were a little more specific on that last point.

You can peruse the rest of Oakville’s bylaws here.

Can you find some crazy or strange bylaws?

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