This will come as a surprise to no one, but this winter, the City of New York did a really miserable job of removing snow from the properties for which it is responsible. We had park sidewalks, pedestrian overpasses, LIRR and CSX bridges, expressway underpasses and the sidewalk along 57th Avenue completely ignored. What was worse was that when you called the problem into 311, they either couldn’t take the report because there was no address or it was sent to the wrong agency for follow up.
This has been a long-standing problem, dating back decades. But some City Council members are working on a potential solution. They introduced the following bill to identify areas for which the city is responsible.
Int 0009-2014 by Council Members Greenfield, Arroyo, Chin, Cohen, Constantinides, Cumbo, Dromm, Ferreras, Gentile, Koo, Levin, Levine, Palma, Williams, Reynoso, Mendez and Ulrich A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to identifying pedestrian bridges for snow and ice removal by the city and establishing a plan for the removal of snow and ice from such bridges.
Be it enacted by the Council as follows:
Section 1. Subdivision c of section 30-103 of the administrative code of the city of New York is amended to read as follows:
c. No later than November fifteenth two thousand twelve* and every November fifteenth thereafter, the report required pursuant to subdivision b of this section shall include:
1. an inventory of all city-owned snow management equipment and resources that were used during any snow event;
2. an inventory of privately-owned snow management equipment and resources used by the city during any snow event, an assessment of how such equipment and resources were deployed and overseen by city agencies or offices and strategies, contracts or agreements used to ensure that such snow management equipment and resources were available to the city; [and]
3. the number of individuals who registered with the city to work during any snow event, and assessment on how such individuals were deployed and overseen by city agencies or offices and strategies, contracts or agreements used to ensure that such individuals were available to the city[.]; and
4. a list of pedestrian bridges for which the department or the department of transportation is responsible for removal of snow or ice, and a plan for the removal of snow and ice from such pedestrian bridges including resources to be used for such removal. Such information shall also be made available to the council members and community boards representing the community district in which any such pedestrian bridge is located.
§2. This local law shall take effect ninety days after its enactment into law.
*2012 was when the bill was originally introduced
There’s also a bill in the works authored by Council Member David Greenfield of Brooklyn that will permit the city to remove snow from sidewalks in front of homes and businesses that refuse to shovel and charge the owners a $250 fine. Will this help? Let’s hope so!