As reported by AM980 news this morning:
Grocery stores could face fines under proposed changes to a bylaw that would target abandoned shopping carts in London.
At a city committee meeting next week, Councillors will debate issuing fines to retailers every time one of their shopping carts is found abandoned, and removed during a property cleanup by city officials.
Every year, the city cleans up hundreds of dilapidated properties, with the property owner facing a charge covering the cost of the cleanup.
Debris, like carts, are usually recycled or disposed of. Under the proposal, the city would fine grocery stores owners $40 for each cart removed, and provide them the option of retrieving it.
Unfortunately, many of the carts, which cost roughly $300 each, are found with irreparable damage.
Ward 4 Councillor Stephen Orser has long complained about the eyesores in his area, and supports the proposal.
“Well, I used to go to locations where there would be 30 or 40 of them, and it was quite a challenge to get them returned,” Orser said. “Now it’s drastically reduced, but people still complain about them, and I call it a ‘nuisance call’, it’s not necessary, and this is making the owners of the carts responsible for them.”
While many stores have already adopted new security measures, Orser hopes it will convince even more to take an active role in preventing people from rolling away with their carts.
That could include investing in carts that lock their wheels when they’re taken off the grocery store property, or carts that require coin deposits.
“I think the main thing is the motivation to pick them up will be there,” said Orser. “There are shopping cart retrieval companies, and they’ll probably engage them, and we probably won’t have an issue, they’ll just pay them more to have them retrieved quickly.”
The new fine will would be incorporated into an existing yard and lot maintenance bylaw. It will be up for debate at Monday’s Community and Protective Services Committee meeting.
Similar fines are already in place in cities like Guelph, Ottawa, and Mississauga.
Wonder if Bob…of Bobnoxious…who wrote a song about, Old Abandoned Shopping Carts in E.O.A…has heard the news yet?