Council looks at curbing snow removal into city streets
January 17, 2019
WORLAND - The Worland City Council will be considering an ordinance to address snow being shoveled into city streets.
City Attorney Kent Richins said he was preparing an ordinance that he hoped to be able to present to the council for review at the Feb. 5 meeting. He said currently city code restricts certain items like litter or other debris from being pushed from the sidewalk into the street. The code does not currently specify snow.
He said the new ordinance would better define the type of debris including leaves, grass and snow, that is prohibited from being swept onto city streets or city property.
The ordinance would also include the prohibition against residents removing snow from public streets and city property without city authorization, Richins said.
Richins said he understands that there needs to be some exceptions regarding pushing snow into city streets so he is including language that would state that exceptions would be made to those properties where it is not feasible to remove snow to other areas except the city street.
He said the area would mainly be the downtown area.
Council member Dennis Koch said that parking lots needed to be included in the ordinance so businesses do not push snow from parking lots out into the streets.
Council member Gary Gerber said Washakie Avenue is another area that may need to be included in the exceptions because there are some properties with high fences and it would be impossible to throw the snow over the fence into the property owner's yard.
Richins said the exceptions language may need to be more detailed before the ordinance is finalized.
Regarding the portion of residents removing snow from city streets, Council member Mandy Horath noted that someone had apparently plowed an alleyway and shoved the snow onto Gregg Avenue and the pile nearly blocks a resident's driveway.
Engineering representative Mike Donnell asked the council if they wanted to prohibit people from clearing ice from the gutters in front of homes and business. "Do you want to prevent that?" he asked, noting that helps move the melting snow if the ice is cleared from the gutter.
Council member Kreg Lombard expressed concern about curb and gutter and sidewalks damaged by the city during snow removal and wondered if the city would be able to help residents financially to repair the sidewalks and curb and gutter.
Public Works Director Brian Burky said the equipment the city has to clear snow and ice from the gutters works better than previous equipment but there is always the possibility of damage.
In other business Tuesday night, the council appointed Gerber from Ward 1, Horath from Ward 2 and Lombard from Ward 3 to be on a committee to work on agreements for out-of-city sewer and water systems. Donnell had reported in previous meetings that he had been reviewing all of the agreements and some of them were out-of-date.