Mayor Menino Uses Taxes to Remind Us About Winter

As I walked the streets of Boston this past weekend, I noticed something that was attached to doorsteps all across the city.

As I walked the streets of Boston this past weekend, I noticed something that was attached to doorsteps all across the city.

Upon closer inspection, I realized it wasn’t a restaurant menu; rather, it was a tri-fold pamphlet from the government that alerted us to the impending season change.

Along with the requisite branding of “Thomas M. Menino, Mayor”, that seems to be on every square inch possible throughout the city, it includes directives such as, “Make your resident parking sticker visible within 24 hours after the end of a storm.”

When exactly is the end of a storm anyway?  Will it be announced?  What is the penalty if you don’t?  I’m sure it is a ticket.

It also reminds us, “don’t over exert yourself while shoveling.”  Thanks.

The companion to that advice is the directive to make sure the path you shovel is “42 inches wide”.  41inch path?  Ticket.

But don’t worry, the city website allows for easy reporting of sidewalks that aren’t up to code – so we can anonymously run to government to solve our “problems” rather than just talking with our neighbors.

The point here is this:  Do we really need to spend taxpayer money on producing these publications?  It was especially troubling when I noticed that these were the “2012-2013” edition.  Is the intent to change these every year?

I would argue that instead of spending time, effort, and money on designing, printing, and delivering these pamphlets (among other things), the city should give the money back to the taxpayer.

That way we can afford to buy 42inch wide shovels for the sidewalks and stopwatches so we know when to expose our parking stickers.

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Maura November 13, 2012 at 04:07 AM
I don't know if these pamphlets are the best way to do it but I do think that people need to be reminded of their responsibilities vis a vis the snow. And I WISH that the city would actually ticket those who don't shovel. Even just once might get some people to actually clear their sidewalks so people don't have to walk in the street. I'd take a path of any size...
Rob Allen November 13, 2012 at 07:45 PM
I love it. You don't own the sidewalk, so you can't kick anyone off of it. But your responsible for maintaining it. So you an indentured servant to the city, even thou you pay taxes. The flyers are just to remind people the following.... Mayor Menino is all powerful. You can sue someone if you fall, not the city, the person whose property is next to the sidewalk. You can have the city fine the person whose property is next to the sidewalk. It sucks to be a property owner in the city of Boston. The city treats you like their wallet.
JC November 14, 2012 at 10:20 PM
It's called personal responsibility. Give back to your city. It won't kill you.
Just a person! November 14, 2012 at 11:03 PM
I am kind of glad for these info pamphlets ,especially if it has the number to call for the sidewalks that is city property that is not shoveled like, public park area's, around schools, ( and just not the front and side doors) the complete circumference! How about all the property owned by the BRA ? Who shovels that? The best was when I got a ticket for not shoveling the sidewalk behind my house that is along a highway! How about local 25? No shoveling done there! And,who is in charge of Rutherford ave?
Owen November 16, 2012 at 10:20 PM
HUGE pet peeve of mine! I can't stand when people don't pull their weight and clear the snow and ice from their part of the sidewalk. That's it. They only need to worry about the 30 (maybe) feet in front of their house or building (presuming we're talking about row house style homes in neighborhoods like Chlarlestown). Not to pat myself on the back, but here I go: I try to clear at least a couple building's lengths on either side of mine if I've determined the inhabitants to be incapable of doing it themselves (I never presume laziness. Could be for a lot of reasons). Because if you're able bodied and capable, then why not?


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