The City of Calgary was exploring developing a Penalties Appeal Board for minor infractions including parking and transit tickets. This would replace the current process of hearing these appeals in Provincial Court.

A Penalties Appeal Board could improve customer service by providing a dispute process that is faster, more efficient and more convenient than the current provincial court-based system.


On May 18, 2021, the Priorities and Finance Committee recommended that Council defer the development of an Administrative Penalties Bylaw, and other related and necessary bylaw amendments, for presentation at public hearing no later than Q2 2022. That motion passed at Council on May 31, 2021.

Everything that can be done to preserve the state of the Administrative Penalty System program’s work to date, including engagement done to date, is being done. At this time, The City is releasing the What We Heard Report (located under Links), and when the project resumes we will update you on how your input was used to inform program decision-making.

Background on the deferral

In 2020 July, Council approved the implementation of an Administrative Penalty System (PFC2020-0625), and funding for certain start-up costs through the Council Innovation Fund (PFC2020-0738). The business recommendation for an Administrative Penalty System demonstrated that an Administrative Penalty System would provide advantages over the current court-based process for challenging alleged bylaw offences, including more convenient and timely access to justice for Calgarians, and a more efficient and less costly adjudicative regime.

At almost the same time, the Province proceeded with justice reforms by passing Bill 21, the Alberta Provincial Administrative Penalties Act (2020 July 23). This would see the adjudication of a broad number of non-criminal matters divert from Traffic Court to a provincial tribunal.

  • Phase one of the Justice Transformation Initiative was implemented in late 2020, with the diversion of impaired driving-related contraventions of the Traffic Safety Act.
  • All remaining offences (including municipal bylaws) presently processed by provincial traffic court division are to be addressed by the Province in phase three.

If there is a possibility that a provincial tribunal adjudicating bylaw enforcement appeals may be operated and funded by the Province, there are risks in continuing to expend valuable City resources on Administrative Penalty System implementation. Administration recommended the deferral of the Administrative Penalty Systems work to ensure that work on both programs is streamlined until there is greater clarity about the Province’s intentions with respect to phase three of the Justice Transformation Initiative.


“Purposeful dialogue between The City and citizens and stakeholders to gather information to influence decision making.” - Engage Policy

Your input, and the input of other citizens and stakeholders, helps The City understand people’s perspectives, opinions, and concerns. Input collected for this project will be compiled and shared through a What We Heard report. Personally identifying information, profanity and comments that do not meet The City's Respectful Workplace Policy or the Online Tool Moderation Practice will be removed.

Although it would be a great outcome, the goal of public engagement is not to reach consensus or make everyone happy. Public engagement is also not about voting or collecting representative information. Public engagement is about considering the input, ideas and perspectives of people who are interested or impacted by decisions, before decisions are made.

To learn more about engagement at The City, visit engage.calgary.ca/about.


Your input will lend valuable information as we explore the development of an Administrative Penalty System (APS) for Calgary, of which the Penalties Appeal Board is a key function.

Engagement objectives for this project are:

  • Better understand customer experiences and recommendations for an improved customer experience
  • Explore opportunities for operational improvement
  • Better understand alternative resolution opportunities
  • Better understand resources/supports needed for implementation

NOTE: There are 2 possible ways to tell your story if you get a ticket:

  1. A review with the enforcement unit that issued your ticket.
  2. If you disagree with the enforcement unit’s decision then you can go to an adjudicator on appeal to the Penalties Appeal Board.

Engagement is now closed. Thank you for providing your input!


Your input was reviewed, themed and summarized in the What We Heard Report.

On May 18, 2021, the Priorities and Finance Committee recommended that Council defer the development of an Administrative Penalties Bylaw, and other related and necessary bylaw amendments, for presentation at public hearing no later than Q2 2022. This was passed at Council on May 31, 2021. Your input is being preserved for use when the project resumes.


We want you to feel included in engagement. This means that we want you to feel respected; we want you to know your opinion is valued; and, we want you to be supported to participate in The City’s engagement process. We do not want you to experience any difficulties to sharing your ideas and opinions with us. We try to design engagement activities so that everyone that wants to be involved, can be.

We use your answers to the following evaluation and demographic questions to understand which voices from the community are missing so we can be better at including them next time. We work with internal and external colleagues to help ensure that our engagement activities are welcoming to all.