New Brunswick

Halloween in northern city and village limit treat seekers

Two communities in northeastern New Brunswick see bylaws governing Halloween Trick or Treating differently. Bathurst's mayor wants to loosen a 20-year-old bylaw; while in Balmoral, the mayor thinks stricter bylaws can keep children safe.

Charles Bernard and Paolo Fongemie think differently about the Halloween bylaws

The mayors of Balmoral and Bathurst have different views on which Halloween restrictions are right for their communities.

Two communities in northeastern New Brunswick see bylaws governing Halloween trick or treating differently. Bathurst's mayor wants to loosen a 20-year-old bylaw; while in Balmoral, the mayor thinks a stricter policy can keep children safe.

Charles Bernard, mayor of Balmoral, thinks his village's policy can help keep the young trick or treaters safe. (http://balmoralnb.com/content/message-mayor)
"We're trying to put it in a timeframe where we ensure security in the municipality and try to do our best that nothing happens. We'll try it and see how it works," said Charles Bernard, mayor of Balmoral.

The village plans to test a new policy limiting the hours for trick or treaters between 2 to 7 p.m. Bernard said with the help of the village firefighters he's hoping to slow traffic as an added precaution for the trick or treaters.

Bathurst's mayor wants to relax age and time limits in the name of fun, while Balmoral's cites security for 7 p.m. cut off
Meanwhile, 55 kilometres down the highway, the city of Bathurst wants to repeal a 20-year-old bylaw that restricts the age of trick or treaters to 14 and limits the hours they can go door to door.

Bathurst mayor Paolo Fongemie thinks the bylaw was created to curb pranksters at that time, but feels things are now different and questions if a bylaw is even needed to govern Halloween. 

Bathurst mayor Paolo Fongemie says a 20-year-old bylaw may restrict working parents time to trick or treat with their kids. (http://www.bathurst.ca/mayorMessage.php)
"Comments that I get from young parents is that between them working, having to go pick up the kids from the daycare... they might be hitting the streets at six or six-thirty," said Fongemie.

He wants the city to be attractive to young parents, so he's hoping by next year they can change the bylaw.

For this Halloween, both communities will have a policy and a bylaw limiting the hours treat seekers can spend going door to door. And both are willing to make changes to appease their citizens.

"If we realize that we have to extend the time to eight o'clock because it's better off and will give a little more time to people," said Bernard.

with files from Shift

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