Rats, drats and tracks addressed at Bay Roberts council

By Olivia Bradbury / Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

An array of issues were addressed at the recent Bay Roberts town council meeting, which was held on May 14th. One of the most prevalent issues revolved around a specific address: 27 Goose Pond Road. The property was abandoned a number of years ago and is in poor condition. Attempts to contact the previous owner failed, and it was eventually confirmed that person is deceased. Council ordered demolition of the house back in 2022, but the order was never carried out. Residents are complaining the abandoned property is overrun with rodents, specifically rats.

Chief Administrative Officer Nigel Black noted the garbage box on the abandoned property may have contributed to the rat problem. Whether demolishing the house will put an end to it is uncertain.

“Certainly, demolishing the house is one piece of the puzzle, but I think there’s more to it,” said Black.

A motion was carried to re-issue the demolition order.

Another resident complaint discussed by council pertained to business appreciation, or rather the lack of it. A resident of Bay Roberts who is a small-business owner — specifically, the owner of a landscaping and excavation company — summarized his complaints in a letter to the council.

“As a taxpayer and small-business owner I don’t feel like we’re getting support from our town,” said the resident, who was not identified at the meeting.

It turned out, the Town has actually hired this particular business in the past. Council discussed how it might help local businesses by bringing more attention to them.

“I agree we need to share the work,” said councillor Silas Badcock. “Not only here, but everywhere.”

Ultimately, council agreed to move the issue to the committee of the whole where staff will be asked for their views on the writer’s complaints.

Another issue council had to settle was the naming of the “old track,” which branches off Eric Dawe Drive. The name suggestions were: Eric Dawe Drive Extension; Track Road; or to submit the issue to the public and let residents offer their suggestions. A motion was initially made and seconded to name the road Eric Dawe Drive Extension, but councillor Dean Franey opposed the idea.

“My issue with Eric Dawe Drive Extension is that it still leaves the possibility that deliveries could not make it if the ‘Extension’ were to get left off,” Franey explained.

Evidently, there have been issues with the mail in the past as a result of road extensions — if the word “Extension” was left off the address, the mail would sometimes not reach the correct recipient. Franey suggested that, to avoid confusion, the Town stop using ‘Extensions’ altogether in street names. After considering Franey’s thoughts on the matter, council rescinded the original motion and a new one was proposed and carried to name the street Track Road.

Finally, council also dealt with a request for aid in altering a property. A resident requested help moving a driveway as it is in the vicinity of a three-way stop located at the junction between Country Road and Sawdust Road. It was noted the residence has been there longer than the three-way stop, meaning the intersection was built despite its proximity to the property.

“I know for me personally, when I first saw that house going there, going through the intersection, I’m like, ‘How did we allow that?'” councillor Badcock remarked.

A motion was carried to get a report from the public works department on the situation for discussion at the committee of the whole.

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