Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Legislative Matters to Meet as a Whole and Discuss New Snow Policies
Legislative item numbers 198318 and 198319 – both submitted at the January 8th Board of Aldermen meeting – are the only occupants of the night’s agenda.
Snow policies were updated by the Curtatone administration in December of 2014 that had residents seeing higher fines and less time to clear City sidewalks after a storm. The policy states, “If snow ceases to fall after sunrise (during daylight hours), property owners musshovel sidewalks by 10 p.m. If snow ceases to fall after sunset (overnight), property owners must shovel sidewalks by 10 a.m.” Fines for failing to comply start off at $50 for a first offense and can result in a lien on property if the City has to use its own resources to clear the snow.
Brightly colored decals will be left on the door of those who are being cited…this is also known as being “Scarlett Lettered.”In a press release, the City stated that it would work with those members of the community who are physically unable to shovel by pairing those residents with Somerville youth through a collaboration with the Office of Commissions, the Health Department and the Council on Aging. Residents would be responsible for paying for the snow to be removed.
The new policies have been received with mixed reviews according to Aldermen. While some look at it as a serious safety issue (with at least one, saying the timeline is not strict enough), most residents see it as impossible given work and school responsibilities.
The Legislative Matters Committee is chaired by Alderman At Large Mary Jo Rossetti with Aldermen at Large Bill White and Jack Connolly, Matthew McLaughlin (Ward 1) and Mark Niedergang (Ward 5).
Labels: Legislative Matters