Must you shovel your sidewalk?

Most folks believe that Bridgewater requires them to remove the snow from the sidewalks in front of their houses.  Yet, it also seems that most folks are comfortable ignoring the requirement.  You’ve seen the evidence:  About one in three property owners seem to shovel their walks.

So about two years ago, when the Council last reviewed the ordinance, it had a decision to make.  Should it keep the requirement or remove it?  The fact was that we were never going to punish anyone for not shoveling, because we can’t know their life situation.  Clearing a rare Virginia snow just isn’t worth risking anyone’s health.  But at the same time, the Council did not want to send the signal that it didn’t care about the condition of the walks.

The result was the new § 4-808:  

§ 4-808. Snow Removal.  All persons occupying, owning, or having charge of any property within the Town are  encouraged  to  remove  the  snow  from  the  entire  sidewalk  in  front  of  such  property,  within six daylight hours after the snow has ceased to fall.  [Emphasis added.]

So we hope that you good citizens who shovel your walks will keep doing so.  It creates a benefit for the community, and you have our official encouragement!  But you non-shovelers need no longer fear the long arm of the law.  As for the streets themselves, we’ll continue to keep them “Bridgewater clear” for you!

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