Snow filled sidewalks in Buffalo are always a problem during the winter months and a member of the Buffalo Common Council is proposing a plan to help deal with it.

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According to reporting by WKBW, the Common Council member from Buffalo's North District is submitting a proposal that would make the City of Buffalo responsible for removing snow from city sidewalks.

Common Council Member Joseph Golombek believes that snow-clogged sidewalks make it unsafe for people to walk and ultimately force pedestrians to walk in the streets, which can create another set of safety issues.

...go into some of these other places and you can tell it’s never been shoveled. There’s just like ruts where people walk, that’s what sticks in my craw.
-North District Council Member Joseph Golombek, while speaking to WKBW

Other cities in New York have similar programs. Both Rochester and Syracuse have sidewalk snow removal programs that will clear city sidewalks whenever it snows more than a few inches. In Rochester, when there are more than 4 inches of new snow, it deploys crews to plow more than 878 miles of sidewalks falls. Crews in Syracuse will plow about 80 miles of sidewalks when there are more than 3 inches of new snow.

Under the proposal, the City of Buffalo would hire private contractors to remove snow from city streets when it snows. There has not yet been an estimate of how much this would cost the city, but considering Buffalo has more than 2,000 miles of sidewalks, it will likely be expensive. Councilmember Golombek suggested that money earned from the School Zone Speed Camera program could be used to cover the costs.

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I think this is a great idea and something the City of Buffalo should have been responsible for all along. As someone who owns property in the City, I have always thought it was unfair that I have to be responsible for the public sidewalks that I do not own. This is one bill that I hope becomes a law.

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