Guelph musician fined $1,500 for hosting driveway concert
GUELPH -- A Guelph musician was fined $1,500 by officials after performing for neighbours in his driveway this past weekend.
Monty Greig and his band, Monty and the Crew, played on his Leacock Avenue driveway on June 19.
“On the last song they came and gave me my tickets when we were already done,” Greig said.
The performer received two tickets: one for hosting a "nuisance party" and another for failing to comply with a Section 7.02 Order under the Reopening Ontario Act.
Scott Green, the City of Guelph's manager of corporate and community safety, said they received reports of a concert being held on a front lawn.
“Obviously someone’s been offended. It was reported to us,” Green said.
Greig said he feels disheartened by the fines, adding he was just trying to bring joy to his street.
“It’s good to see people out enjoying themselves and smiling and forgetting about the pandemic for a while,” said neighbour Len Bridgeman, who watched the performance across the street, on a lawn chair, while on his driveway.
“The little kids dancing. It’s worth every penny if I have to pay,” said Greig. “I’m going to fight it and go to court if I have to, to make sure that they do go away.”
Greig claimed most people were watching from their own properties. He said no one was on his driveway other than his fellow band members. He said there were residents on the sideway, street and boulevard.
Only ten people are allowed to gather outdoors during Step 1 of the province's pandemic reopening plan.
“He’s a catalyst of that. He is attracting these people there whether they were on his front lawn or not,” said Green.
Greig said the mid-afternoon performance was family-friendly.
“It’s not like there was a university party going on or anything like that,” Greig said.
Bylaw believed they responded appropriately and said they acted as they would have in any part of the city.
“There’s a report of alcohol being consumed. There’s reports of people on the street and on the sidewalk going back-and-forth between homes,” said Green.
Greig said he tried to contact bylaw in advance to ask about a noise exemption. The city said they are not allowed to give people permission to break bylaws.
“I was lead to believe that it was going to be okay,” Greig said.
Greig performed a similar driveway show without his band around Christmas without incident.
Bylaw said they only attend residences if they receive a complaint.