In December 2017, Meridian Township implemented a new snow removal ordinance that took effect at the start of the year.
According to the new ordinance, residents must remove snow and ice from their sidewalks within 24 hours following a snow fall. If there is more than two inches of snow or ice remaining after those 24 hours, the owner of the household will be notified by the township to remove the snow while given an additional 24 hours for removal. If they don’t remove the snow, someone from the township will come out to remove the snow, and proceed to bill the homeowner for not complying with the ordinance. With new rules come different opinions and reactions, and many residents aren’t too pleased.
“I don’t think it’s fair considering they don’t know who lives in the home,” said Carole Kennedy, a resident of Meridian Township. “They first need to approach the person living in the house because they might be elderly and physically can’t go out to shovel their own driveways or sidewalks.”
It’s not easy for elderly people to go out in the cold weather to shovel the snow or try and scrape the ice off the sidewalks. It’s more dangerous for them considering they have to go outside in the cold weather immediately just so they can avoid a fine.
“I think everyone should do their own snow removal, it’s not a lot to ask,” said Phil Grendstaff from Haslett. “If someone is elderly and they don’t want to go out and shovel, they should contact they city and see if there’s anything they can do about it.”
Some people won’t be willing to pay for a service to come out and clean their sidewalks, but they might have no other options. The average rate most snow removal companies charge you for sidewalk snow removal ranges between $32-52.
“They are being needlessly excessive and punishing those who are too busy or incapable of shoveling the snow or ice themselves,” said Jacob Crimin of Meridian Township. “At the same time, people have their right to voice their opinions and should go to city hall and see what can be done.”
Clearly, some people are upset over the new ordinance. While this winter has seemingly been more of a bitter cold one than it has been a snowpocalypse, Michigan is still a long ways away from winter being swept under the rug.
“I don’t think it’s right,” said Marie Washington of Meridian Township. “In most cases, my street isn’t even plowed in 24 hours. It’s quite amusing the city would impose such a rule.”
People have a voice to go out and speak up for what they believe is right. If all else fails and the ordinance stays in place, there’s only a couple months left to go till the weather warms up.
There isn’t a whole lot of options for Meridian residents when it comes to snow removal and abiding to the new laws. Looks like it might be time to do some shoveling.