Albany's new snow shovel rule is in effect + assistance info for people who have trouble shoveling

unshoveled sidewalk

December arrived on Friday, and so too did the new tighter rules for shoveling sidewalks in Albany.

We've already gone through this in detail, so we won't rehash it. But the basics are:

+ A property owner has 24 hours to clear the full width of the sidewalk.

+ The city can now fine a property owner for not clearing the walk directly after the 24-hour period. (The old rule required a notice first, and then another 24 hours before a fine.) Fines start at $100. And the city can also charge for the cost of labor to clear the sidewalk, an amount no less than $75.

The city's violation system has been largely complaint driven in the past. If there's a problem property in your neighborhood, you can report it to the Department of General Services by calling 518-434-2489 or filing a ticket on Albany's SeeClickFix.

With the start of the new rules, the city of Albany also released info for people who might have trouble physically clearing their sidewalk. From a press release (link added):

The City of Albany is proud to partner with United Way of the Greater Capital Region and 2-1-1 so that seniors and individuals with disabilities can be easily connected with volunteer organizations willing to assist with sidewalk snow removal. If you are a senior (65 or older) or person with a disability, or know of a person who is, and need assistance clearing the sidewalk adjacent to the property you own or occupy during a snow storm, we encourage you to call 2-1-1 and speak with a call specialist who can refer you to a partner organization. As this is a volunteer- based service, the City of Albany and 2-1-1 cannot guarantee assistance. 2-1-1 is available 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, in more than 200 languages, and has the ability to handle the TTY relay services.

As noted in our review of snow shoveling violations issued in recent winters, it appears a large majority of property owners tagged were absentee landlords.

Shovels at the ready. Snow storms are opportunities to be good neighbors.

Comments

Maybe I'm missing where it says it, but when does the 24-hour period start? Assuming it snows all day, do you start the clock the minute it stops? Does the city post it somewhere online (snow must be removed by 6:37pm tomorrow, for example)? Any insight? Thanks!

What, if anything, does the city do about sidewalks at vacant buildings, especially those which have the red X? There's a huge green building at the corner of Eagle and Myrtle that always has icy and snowy sidewalks.

There are a few other spots that are neglected in the Mansion District - corner lots often seem to ignore the "side" of their buildings. From Elm to Bleecker Place (in front of the basketball park) and on Park Ave & Eagle across from Lincoln Park are two that come to mind.

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