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Why do we have bylaws?

Bylaws are created as a way to address issues and concerns of the local community. They are created to protect the environment, private and public property to ensure public health and to maintain an orderly appearance in the community and city. A bylaw may regulate or define the rights and responsibilities of citizens by prohibiting, permitting or otherwise controlling certain activities.

The City of Calgary uses bylaws:

  • To address matters of public interest.
  • To enforce standards of conduct.
  • As a licensing device.
  • For planning and control.

A municipality exercises its powers through bylaws and resolutions. The Municipal Government Act​ gives The City certain powers that it is required to exercise, and others that it may exercise if it chooses to do so. It may also specify whether or not the power must be exercised by bylaw. In general, The City's powers are exercised by bylaw where it directly affects members of the public.