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Is your Sidewalk Shoveled?

Did you know city law states a property owner must shovel the snow on the sidewalk in front of their property?

Is your sidewalk clear?

Or have you walked through the city and encountered uncleared sidewalks in front of businesses?

City ordinance requires property owners to clear the sidewalks in front of their property within 12 hours of the end of a snowstorm.

Last year, the city issued 2,000 warnings and about 8 citations to property owners who didn't clear sidewalks after a major snowstorm in February.

At the time, then-Director of Administration Robin Muksian-Schutt said enforcing the rule can be a challenge.

In many cases, there is no property owner to cite for an uncleared sidewalk, Muksian-Schutt said. Or, just as soon as an area is cleared, another storm has come along and made a mess of things again.

Typically, a warning from the city is enough to prod a property owner into action.

Let us know what you've seen out there.

Suzanne Arena January 03, 2013 at 02:08 PM
I have been biotching about this since 2008. I will do a blog follow-up with several answers that I received. I do want to recognize that Robin Muksian-Schutt and Councilman Lupino both were great in their response time follow-up. Albeit, not all my questions were answered...but many facts were cleared up. As far as hiring a person strictly for this type of enforcement – I can tell you that we are not going to create new positions right now – and with a reduction in City staff of approximately 10%, I can’t put someone out there to walk up and down the streets all day. The grant to which you refer was from resource recovery. I have not found a grant money to promote hiring people for sidewalk snow removal. The safe routes to schools program is very clear in the use of funds, and this would not fall under that. Regarding the fine – I believe that sometime in 2006 or so, that ordinance was updated. There are two sections in the code: one which refers to the one-time fine and another which references a $20.00 per day fine. Remember, we must comply with state law when we set these. A non-payment, like any other “ticket” would require appearance in Municipal Court. Again, I will research the numbers on fines collected – but as I emphasized in the article in today’s Herald, this is not about revenue generating, but about public safety. If a warning suffices, then we have succeeded.
Suzanne Arena January 03, 2013 at 02:09 PM
Sorry, I didn't mean to post anything after my initial paragraph. Will follow-up.
Vinnie B. January 03, 2013 at 03:22 PM
Snow that started off in the street but then ends up IN the end of my driveway via a city plow gets put right back in the street where it came from. When a good size storm is dropping 6-12 inches i try and keep up with the storm by shoveling my driveway every couple of hours. That includes the end of my driveway BEFORE plows have even hit the roads. If i wake up to only an inch or so in my driveway (because i kept up with it) and 2 foot wall of snow 3 feet into my driveway, that snow gets tossed right back into the street.
Vinnie B. January 03, 2013 at 03:25 PM
Here in my neighborhood the front lawn goes right to the street's black asphalt curb. There isn't a sidewalk per-say. Do we shovel a path in the lawn?
Cari Medeiros Petrella January 03, 2013 at 03:56 PM
AGREED Katie...Garden city school is well shoveled with re: to sidewalks HOWEVER, there are no pathways from the street TO the sidewalks, including at the crosswalk. Common sense would be to shovel a few paths thru the snow mounds to kids, parents and teachers do not have to climb over snow mounds to get to the sidewalks. This is a city/school department issues

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