Get your mowers ready or face fines: Moncton passes bylaw requiring short lawns

Moncton city council unanimously approved a bylaw Monday limiting grass and weeds to 20 centimetres in length. Violations can result in a fine between $140 and $2,100.

City mandates grass, weeds must be kept to 20 centimetres or property owners could be fined up to $2,100

Moncton has passed a bylaw requiring lawns and grasses to be no more than 20 centimetres tall. (Pierre Richard/Radio Canada)

Moncton's long lawn bylaw passed unanimously Monday without debate.

The bylaw requires all properties to keep lawns, weeds and other grasses under 20 centimetres in length or face fines between $140 and $2,100.

The rules would apply to vacant land only if the city deemed the grass a safety hazard, such as obstructing pedestrians or motorists.

Mayor Dawn Arnold told reporters after the meeting the goal is not to crack down on homeowners that forget to mow their grass.

"We're talking about ongoing, long-term negligence," Arnold said.

"This is not out to get anybody. We just never had any sort of authority or any ability to come back when someone was a long-term neglector, so this gives us that ability."

The length limit is similar to Dieppe and Riverview.

"It's important we all have the same rules around something like that," she said.

The bylaw is now in effect.

If the bylaw violation continues for more than one day, the fine can be multiplied by the number of days the grass remains uncut.

Nicole Melanson, a spokeswoman for the city, said earlier this month the city expects to handle about 400 complaints per year based on the number of calls to other similar-size communities.

City spokeswoman says new bylaw that caps lawn length at 20 cm was considered a council priority. 0:42

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Shane Magee

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Shane Magee is a Moncton-based reporter for CBC.