When winter storms begin to pile up large amounts of fresh snow, the issue of snow removal and management can become a contentious issue. For some residents an un-shoveled driveway or sidewalk is no big deal, simply something to ignore and let the spring thaw take care off.
Other residents can feel frustrated when snow piles up and become perturbed by those that don’t regularly prioritize managing snow. Mt. Pleasant, MI is hoping to appease that population by making the slackers consistently shovel out fresh snow.
So where does the line of snow removal responsibility begin? According to the Morning Sun, “under the proposed ordinance, all property owners in the city would be required to clear their sidewalks.” To reduce costs and improve safety, Mt. Pleasant is looking to residents and business owners to perform snow removal work, mainly for sidewalks in the city.
The most obvious question raised by many is: at what interval is snow removal expected when storms continue to dump fresh snow day after day? During a snowstorm, residents would be forced to shovel within 72 hours of every snowfall.
Understandably this is a hugely controversial issue, as many residents are not keen on taking on the new snow removal responsibility. However if the ordinance passes, Mt. Pleasant residents will be shoveling come November 2019, or they could face civil infractions. The Morning Sun also is reporting that “Penalties would be $50 for the first violation, $100 for the second, and $250 for the third.”
Other cities already have such shoveling laws in place. In New York City every owner, lessee, tenant, occupant, or other person having charge of any lot or building must clean snow and/or ice from the sidewalk within 4 hours after the snow has stopped falling, or by 11:00 AM if the snow has stopped falling after 9:00 PM the previous evening.
City fine amounts are spelled out in the regulation as follows:
- $100-$150 for a first offense
- $150-$350 for a second offense
- $250-$350 for third and subsequent offenses
So what do you think? Should their be laws requiring people to shovel their walkways?
Find the entire Morning Sun article here: Mt. Pleasant seeks input on snow shoveling mandate