Our village has enacted a new regulation that all homeowners within village limits that live on the main street must clear the public sidewalk in front of their homes within 24 hours of a snowfall or incur a $50 fine. Now I am a single woman in my 60's. I have a weak back and get heart skips if I exert myself in the cold. Added to the fact I have a 45 foot frontage and when the road plow passes, it throws up a 4 foot bank of frozen impacted show that a jackhammer would be need to get through. I don't own a snow blower or know anyone that does shoveling. No kids want to work anymore, or if they did, would charge more than the fine would be. Any suggestions?
Go to your doctor and get some documentation on your back and heart.
Also be sure to have financial information that hiring someone to clear your walk would be a financial hardship.
Not to mention that $50 fine...is it cumulative? $50 per day?
Attend your city council or town hall meetings. Have a voice before something like this is forced on you.
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Call the high school and the local scouts. Check with your (or any chu rch.)
Many NY high Schools have a community service requirement, shoveling the walk of a senior citizen may qualify.
A boy working towards his eagle badge may do it too. If you are over 60 contact your county's "Office for the Aging" (I live in NY and have gotten great info from the OFA.)
We live just outside the "snowbelt" that gets the LES all winter. we don't get as much as slightly to the west of us, but we are seniors too. Not sure what part of NY you are in, I can look into more ways to get this done though if you'd like.
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This is a common regulation in most urban areas and is considered necessary for public safety. Perhaps, you can pay or exchange services with one of your neighbors to clear your walk when they do theirs. During the winter, some yard service providers also clear walks. Hope you are able to find a workable solution.
I don't think I can qualify for it being a financial hardship. I am more concerned that is a physical hardship.
Okay. I'm assuming you hire someone to do your lawn. Contact them - or as mentioned above other services - to do your shoveling.
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You could also contact a local realtor in your area. They know of handymen and others that can do jobs like this.
As someone mentioned, this is common and necessary. You do not want someone falling on your unshoveleled/icy sidewalks. Call your town hall/code enforcement and ask if they can recommend someone.
I worked in code enforcement, and we rarely had issues with this.
I definitely understand your dilemma. Last snowstorm I had 5 men ring my bell to shovel snow. One even rang my bell and gave me his name/phone # the night before the snowstorm. I hate shoveling snow and would definitely hire someone if my DH were unable to continue shoveling snow. I would put the word out and hang up posters/signs in your local high school, "Y" or church (or put ad on Craigslist or other website) and look to hire someone. Tell your neighbors or put signs in closeby stores too, if they allow it. I would offer what you could afford. I think a strong teenager would be willing to shovel snow for less money than an adult. (only 1 of the guys that rang my bell were 'young')
It is dangerous and I hate houses where the owners DO NOT shovel the snow/ice. I walk a lot and it is VERY slippery!! I live a block away from a school. We must shovel ASAP!
[QUOTE]Originally posted by weakestlink:
I don't think I can qualify for it being a financial hardship. ......QUOTE]
Call the local high school and ask if they have a student who you can hire to move that snow.
My city has a similar law. But they don't fine you. They move the snow and charge you for it. Its cheaper to higher a high school student.
You mentioned that you live in a village...so you may need to call upon everyone that you know. Try every church office, private school, scout leader, neighbor, etc.
Perhaps a church youth leader can round up some kids to shovel for a donation to their missions. The same should hold true for scouts. We no longer have any kids on our block but I know that there are some on the next block. Call the "senior center" and ask what others do.
Good luck with this issue. We are supposed to get 6 inches tomorrow, too. Fortunately I am still able to shovel (63)!
I think you would really like a "wheeled snow shovel" or "rolling snow shovel". I bought one a few years ago, and all you do is push it along the sidewalk, like a baby stroller! There is no lifting, and it's amazingly easy. I live on a main street, and every time I use it people look at me like "What the he.. is she doing?" But I promise you, it works really well. Just google wheeled snow shovel.
I live on a corner, so I have a long area to shovel. Unless there is a huge amount of snow, it works great. My husband thought it was really silly, but now he's using it too. We would rather use the wheeled shovel a couple of times than wait for the snow to finish and have to get out the big snow blower.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Annon,
I agree with everyone -- there should be a high schooler or a scout that would be willing to do it -- I would call the school or locate a scout group. And I'm sure there are services that do it as well -- even if you have to pay $50 to get it done, it would be cheaper than paying the fine which is $50 PER DAY! (And I assume, you'd still have to clean the walk!)
We don't have that in our town but with our temperature fluctuation, it's usually mostly gone in a few days.
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Your village ordinance isn't anything new for alot of communities that live where it snows frequently. That snow shoveler looks manageable even for you. I'm almost 70 and when I go back to MI for visits in winter I'm always shoveling our sidewalks- don't like it, but I do it. Just remember there are alot of folks who do walk and need the sidewalk cleared- whether it's postal employees, school kids, walkers, etc.
When the area uses ice melt and then eventually plows, I know of what OP is speaking of when it is hard as glaciers near the curb. And that is where the sidewalk sounds to be located. One cannot use anything plastic in this situation, and only heavy steel shovels can often break the chunks into throwable size pieces. A LARGE two stage snow blower, may or may not do the job.
My advice is to both hope for a mild winter (contact a neighbor who also has a similar situation and do/pay what they do) and look for an easier to deal with living location this next spring. Being a homeowner anywhere involves a certain amount of physical capabilities or expendable cash to pay others to maintain a residence.
From past posts and pictures, I am thinking OP might be happier in an apartment or small condo, where these things are no longer her responsibility. Just a thought/observation.
weakestlink, I think you absolutely need some help with this. Start making calls, and find someone who you can pay to do your sidewalks when it snows. Just do it. I bet you will find someone within 20 phone calls.
And Annon - I seriously want one of those wheeled snow shovels! That looks fabulous!
For the past year or so we have found it necessary to have our driveway plowed and that company also does our front porch, stairs and walk. DH still clears the path (other side of house) for the oil man, the back porch, digs the car out and clears the way in the back to the car.
For people on a fixed income (which shrinks as other expenses rise,) this is a concern to us esp in the winter we are having so far (2 or 3 clearings a week)
However it is much less than the inconvenience, pain and lost time, resulting from bodily injuries to say nothing of the increased risk of heart attacks.
Some expenses are simply necessary. Also although WL says she lives "upstate" that is different things to different people. If you live near NYC it might mean the Hudson valley.
If like me you are from Central N.Y. that means the greatest snow belt in the country. Shoveling snow there is no picnic.
I think the suggestion to contact your next door neighbors to clear your walkway too (for a fee or in exchange for services) makes perfect sense especially if they hire someone or have a snow blower. If not, do you have family or friends in the area who can recommend a service?
We live on a corner lot so we have sixty feet in the front and 100 feet on the side of our property that had to be shoveled. Our city has a similar ordinance. They would put two warning letters on your garage door, 48 hours apart. After that, the city would shovel your driveway and charge you $300. We hired the same company that did our lawn to plow our sidewalks.
I agree with the others. Try to find someone able and willing to clear it for you. It would be dangerous for you to even try it. Sad, I live in South Jersey, at the end of a court. We have a small snow blower, my adult son always goes to the end of the court to do an aging mans'walkways and driveway.
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Cocok, did you ever get the wheeled snow shovel? It seems we're using it every other day this winter.
Weakestlink - You posted this about six weeks ago and at least five snowstorms ago. I was just wondering how you solved this problem.
I know EVERYONE is soooo tired of the snow and it's snowing once AGAIN where I am.....
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