Council to beef up fines in response to catalytic converter thefts in Calgary

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Calgary metropolis councillors voted unanimously Tuesday to boost fines and research different options to curb catalytic converter thefts crossed the city.

The question from Ward 14 Coun. Peter Demong, and co-signed by respective different councillors, asks metropolis medication to usage the city’s concern licence bylaw to modulate the possession of an unattached catalytic converter.

Demong said the question includes establishing heftier fines to enactment arsenic a deterrent.

“The good needs to spell up to astatine slightest $1,000-plus successful bid to promote an existent courtroom appearance, arsenic opposed to conscionable paying the good successful an envelope and walking away.”

According to information from the Calgary Police Service, determination were 3,174 reported catalytic converter thefts betwixt January and November past year. That’s up from 1,560 thefts successful 2021, portion determination were lone 300 reported successful 2020 and 205 successful 2019.

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The summation is besides being attributed to the rising terms of precious metals that catalytic converters are made retired of: platinum, palladium and rhodium.

The City of Calgary said replacing a catalytic converter tin outgo betwixt $1,300 and $3,400.

“The full intent of this is to travel up with immoderate solutions,” Demong said.

Demong’s question was inspired by a determination from the City of Leduc, which changed its bylaw to good anybody successful possession of unattached catalytic converters but for those with a valid concern licence for automotive repair oregon car parts supply, oregon those who person a licence from the City of Leduc.

According to Leduc RCMP, the programme besides includes a concern with section businesses to engrave a vehicle’s VIN fig connected the basal of a catalytic converter to assistance marque it easier to place if it’s stolen.

Although nary stolen converters with the etched VIN numbers person been recovered, the section RCMP detachment said the programme is simply a adjuvant deterrent.

“People are alert of this and they cognize present we tin place the proprietor of that catalytic converter based connected the VIN being etched connected it, with the quality to travel up with immoderate benignant of a transgression codification investigation,” Leduc RCMP Cst. Cheri-Lee Smith told Global News. “We privation to support those catalytic converters connected the vehicles successful our communities and retired of the hands of criminals.”

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The Calgary Police Service precocious announced a concern with Kal Tire with a akin idea; conveyance owners tin get their catalytic converters engraved with their VIN fig arsenic portion of the aviator task done to the extremity of March.

“In Alberta, the instrumentality states that if you privation to recycle a catalytic converter, you person to supply impervious of ownership,” Kal Tire mechanical programme manager Tim Orpen said. “If the VIN fig engraved doesn’t lucifer that impervious of ownership, they can’t really bring it to a recycler.”

According to Demong, the program being developed by metropolis medication volition enactment successful tandem with that partnership.

Although Demong’s question received unanimous support from metropolis council, determination were immoderate concerns raised implicit the city’s quality to enforce immoderate caller rules.

Ward 1 Coun. Sonya Sharp noted caller bylaws and regularisation changes astir single-use items, favored ownership and thoroughfare harassment.

“I deliberation arsenic a assembly we person to inquire ourselves if we honestly tin enforce these things that we’re putting forward,” Sharp told council. “How galore much of these tin we bring guardant without expanding enforcement resources?”

City medication is expected to travel backmost to assembly with recommendations connected the contented successful June.

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Demong said metropolis medication volition besides look for different strategies successful an effort to curb the spike successful thefts.

“If idiosyncratic other has immoderate ideas with regards to however we tin hole this, telephone my office, I’m open,” Demong said.

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