By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Friday, October 25, 2013
No bus-only tickets issued, says red-faced McHattie
Hamilton police did not ticket anyone in the city’s new bus-only lane, a red-faced councillor now says.
Ward 1 Councillor Brian McHattie announced at Wednesday’s council meeting that police had incorrectly ticketed 20 to 25 drivers that day, as the new transit-only lane launched on King Street. He says he got his information from an anonymous call he didn’t confirm before making a public statement.
It turns out police handed out 26 educational pamphlets to drivers using the bus-only lane — but not a single ticket or demerit point.
“It seems someone tried to lead us astray,” said the recently announced mayoral candidate, who admitted jumping the gun by publicly announcing the allegations as fact.
“I guess I was thinking you want to get on top of an issue like this, if it’s true,” said McHattie, who noted anxiety has been high among some councillors and commuters over the bus-only lane experiment.
“But in this case I moved too fast.”
McHattie said police Chief Glenn De Caire called him Thursday morning after investigating the allegations. While six tickets were issued on King, none was related to the bus-only lane.
“I’ve apologized to the chief,” he said. “This has kept him jumping.”
McHattie said an anonymous person left a message with his office staff alleging he had received a $200-plus ticket and two demerit points. The message also alleged between 20 and 25 people received the tickets.
McHattie said Wednesday night his staff had checked with police over the figure. On Thursday morning, he clarified his staff had not received confirmation from police. (Source: Hamilton Spectator)