Editorial cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday April 18, 2015
City girds for superbox battle with Canada Post
The city is willing to take Canada Post to court over its plans to unilaterally install controversial super-mailboxes across the city.
Council enacted a new bylaw Wednesday that requires the Crown corporation to apply for a $200 permit for each of an estimated 4,000 community mailboxes meant to replace door-to-door mail delivery in Hamilton.
That means city bylaw officers can now lay provincial offences charges if Canada Post ignores the new rules and begins installing the unpopular “super-mailboxes” this week on the Mountain.
The agency argued Wednesday it isn’t bound by the bylaw.
The city should charge the Crown corporation anyway in the case of a violation “and let the courts decide who is right and who is wrong,” said Coun. Terry Whitehead.
Whitehead put forward what he called an “unprecedented” municipal regulation motion.
“There ought to be some regulations that apply when Canada Post does this, because it sounds like they’re going to continue on (with mailbox installation) whether we like it or not,” said Mayor Fred Eisenberger. “I think they ought to be a little more understanding and work with the city … to access our right-of-ways and roadways.”
Canada Post has no plans to delay the first wave of installations on the Mountain, said spokesperson Jon Hamilton, who nonetheless wouldn’t speculate how the Crown corporation will react if it is charged under a municipal bylaw.
He reiterated that Canada Post believes it continues to have the “jurisdiction” and “authority” to install mailboxes in municipal road allowances. The agency is willing to “work collaboratively” on locating the boxes, he added, but that doesn’t include following the bylaw or applying for individual permits. (Source: Hamilton Spectator)