Tuesday, February 27, 2007

I'm still getting used to small town living. One thing I realize I miss about the "big city" is that municipal governments have a bit more influence on your daily life. I'm no advocate of government interference in personal lives but there are some examples of when this is a good thing.

Case in point, shoveling your sidewalk. When I lived in both Toronto (Pop 2.2 Million) and Kitchener-Waterloo (Pop 300,000) there were municipal bylaws regarding the requirement that all property owners shovel their sidewalks within 24 hours of a snowfall.

Sure there were some people who never did it but for the most part everybody complied with the bylaw. If there were complaints to the city they would send a crew out and shovel the sidewalk in front of the offending house, and send the tenant a bill. This wans't done at minimum wage either, these were city workers and that is a union gig. The bill could be several hundred dollars.

Now I live in a very small town (Pop 900) where there is no municipal bylaw regarding shoveling your walk. I seem to be one of the few folks who takes the time to get this done after each major snowfall. Not just because it is the right thing to do (I cringe at the thought of some poor old lady slipping in front of my house or a kid getting hit by a car because their only choice was to walk on the street) but because shoveling snow is really one of the few forms of exercise I get.

I'm going to try to figure out how I can get a citizens initiative on the ballot in our next municipal election.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I also live in a small town with very little codes enforced.What do you do about looking out the kitchen to see bales of straw stacked around the foundation of their house and with spring here it has grass growing out!I wish I could move could move but I just retired and have lived in my home 40 years and never wanted to move.THAT IS HOW I FOUND THIS BLOG!