It’s deadline to shovel priority walks


Three days – 72 hours – since the last snowstorm is the grace period before residents and businesses are to shovel sidewalks on their properties. The city law applies to “priority sidewalks” in the vicinity of schools, although officials would like to see sidewalks throughout the city cleared.

The deadline following the last major snow event was yesterday and, judging from a drive-by survey on many of the priority sidewalks, some are cleared but many are covered by a rock-hard mound of ice and snow.

Last week the Police Department issued a release reminding citizens of the law and priority sidewalks.

“The goal is to get sidewalks clear and not to give out fines,” said Sgt. John Kelly of the traffic division.

According to the ordinance approved by the City Council on the basis of the recommendations of a study committee, the first violation is a warning followed by a $100 fine for the second violation. The law further empowers the city to clear the walk and to charge the property owner for the work.

For the moment, the major area of concern for Kelly is the even-numbered properties on Main Avenue in the vicinity of Wickes School. The road is heavily traveled and, he said, a number of students walk to school. The priority list calls for Main Avenue sidewalks on the even-numbered side of the road to be cleared from Industrial Drive to Buttonwoods Avenue.

Ward 5 Councilman Ed Ladouceur, who formed the study commission after the city started issuing citations under the former law, noted Tuesday the law provides for hardship cases for people who physically can’t do the work and don’t have the resources to pay to have it done. These people should contact the city’s human service division. Reflecting on committee deliberations, Ladouceur recalled he had sought to have the school department waive walking requirements for busing at those times following heavy snowfalls when walks would be covered. That couldn’t be worked out, however.

It is unclear whether a warning counts as the first offense from year to year. Kelly said police have the ability to track that as once a warning or citation is issued, the department would have it in its computer database.

Questions can be referred to the Warwick Police Department’s Traffic Unit (468-4343).


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Just shovel

Thursday, February 16

I wonder what the deadline is for the city to clear more than a narrow strip of pavement down the middle of the side streets.

Over the years I have wondered if I should start sending the city a bill for the 20 square feet of street (not sidewalk) I have to shovel after every storm to actually get out of my drive way.

Friday, February 17

Please fine me. Either the city owns the sidewalks, in which case it is their obligation to clear their property, or I own my sidewalk, in which case the city cannot force me to work on my own property. Slavery is over. You cannot force citizens to clear city sidewalks.

Sunday, February 19

I'd love for someone to come and try to give me a ticket for this...bring lots of help.

Time for someone to get this stupid ordinance overturned, even if it has to go through the State Judicial System.

If the City sends employees to clear the sidewalk, I'm already paying for them, you nitwits- another point to bring up in court; besides, there are enough employees who could use some exercise and a little fresh air sitting on-ass in facilities around the City; never mind, I'm sure their union contract forbids it, although they get paid to show up at their jobs even if they can't perform them during inclement weather.

Wednesday, March 1

Plat maps for your property are available from the City or part of your mortgage package- obtaining one is cheaper than the $100 fine, if you don't have one already.

It will clearly show if you own the property all the way to the curb; if you don't own the sidewalk, offer them a free shoe ride.

Wednesday, March 1