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Snowy Sidewalks Top Concern for City Councillor

A Woodstock City Councillor wants to find out how much it would cost to create a standard for clearing sidewalks. Jim Northcott says the number-1 complaint he's received from the public this winter has been about the condition of city sidewalks. From deep snow, to icy conditions, sidewalks have been impassable for some that need them. Councillor Jim Northcott says walkable sidewalks are essential for people that rely on them. "For granted we take it as a god given right that the roads must be cleared for cars. But they have a right too, people who walk have a right. So how much money should we spend, of our tax dollars, to give these people the right that they should be entitled to." Northcott says the city previously tried a by-law mandating residents have to clear the sidewalks infront of their home within a certain time frame of a snowfall. However, he says some seniors and single parents don't have the time, ability or money to clear the sidewalks near their home. He believes the onus should fall on the city. "I think we do have an obligation for seniors,and for students, young people, who walk to school. It's very important that we move forward and see where we have to go with snow removal." Northcott is asking for a staff report on what it would take to have a standard for clearing sidewalks. If council supports his request, a report would be tabled for May 16th.

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