Some Lawrence sidewalks remained snowbound Saturday, despite a city ordinance that levies fines of $20 per day against property owners for failing to clear them.
One example could be found Saturday on a walkway between the intersection of Vantuyl and Oak Tree drives and Quail Run School. The path had been partly cleared where it ran near two homes, but it was completely covered as it led through school property, even after hours of thaw.
Neighborhood resident Leann Johnson discovered that while taking her usual morning walk Friday and said she didn't know whether to make a complaint or not.
According to the ordinance, all property owners started risking fines if their sidewalks weren't cleared by 8 a.m. Thursday. The ordinance allows 48 hours from the end of a snowfall until the fines kick in.
The city does not actively patrol for properties that are out of compliance, according to Brian Jimenez, the city's code enforcement manager. But residents can file a complaint about a sidewalk by calling 832-7700. Or they can use the city's online code enforcement reporting system.
The ordinance requires property owners to clear the sidewalk of snow and ice so that it is passable for pedestrians. If ice is difficult to remove, sand may be spread over the ice to avoid a citation.
If found in violation, property owners are sent a notice of violation through the mail and will have the opportunity to contest the violation in Lawrence Municipal Court. The standard fine for violating the ordinance is $20, plus $60 in court costs.