Here is the proposed language for administrative fines for failure to clear sidewalks within 24 hours of the end of a snow event. These fines would be in addition to paying the full cost of a private company removing the snow.
If this sounds harsh I want to point out that property owners have an obligation to clear their sidewalks and many are not. The 40% of Minnesotans that do not drive a car have a right to safe pedestrian routes. I have seen children and those with disabilities have to go out onto streets to get around. I do not believe that the City of Rochester should need to be anyone’s babysitter. My goal is not to make a bunch of money, but rather to ensure that our pedestrian routes are clear and safe. There is no excuse to fail to clear or hire someone else to fail to clear a sidewalk.
3) The City hereby establishes the fine for committing a violation of the offense of Failure to Remove Snow, Ice, Dirt and Rubbish from a Public Sidewalk (R.C.O. §72.02) as follows:
A. First Calendar Year Offense: $40 per incident for residential property and $60 per incident for commercial property;
B. Second Calendar Year Offense: $60 per incident for residential property and $100 per incident for commercial property.
C. Third or More Calendar Year Offense: $120 per incident for residential property and $200 per incident for commercial property.