Here's an idea that will save your town money: Instead of having the DPW plow the streets, require each property owner to dig out the section of road that they front.
What's that you say? That's a ridiculous plan? What about people who were away or sick during a storm? We'd never ensure roads are clear that way?
Of course. Yet that's the "plan" most communities follow for making sidewalks safe after a snowstorm.
That's the start of my column in today's MetroWest Daily News, which argues that plowing sidewalks is an important safety issue.
We don't let snow mounds block the middle of a street and expect cars to veer off the roads around them. Why is it acceptable for pedestrians, who are most at risk when roads are slippery and narrower than usual, to be forced off a public way?
We might as well write it into our community charters: "Residents may only expect public safety services when traveling by motorized vehicle."