COLUMBIA — Residents took to the sidewalks Saturday morning to clean up the remnants of this week's storm.
Sidewalks are not the city’s responsibility. According to the sidewalk standards in Columbia’s code of ordinances, residents are required to keep their sidewalks clear and free from snow and ice.
“Any person failing to observe the provisions of this section shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor,” according to the code.
Jill Stedem, public information specialist at the Public Works Department, said there’s been some leeway with recent enforcement due to the weather, but people are still asked to take care of their sidewalks and follow the ordinance.
Some residents did just that.
Just me and the goats
At around 9:30 a.m., the Daniel Boone Regional Library began to shed the layer of snow that had collected overnight.
This was thanks to Mike Knoll, one of the library’s maintenance staff members, who said he’s been shoveling since Tuesday at both the library and at home on his farm.
“It was just me,” Knoll said. “Well, me and the goats.”
Knoll said shoveling is a full-time job and the true trick of the trade is to “stay ahead of it.”
Busy at work
Frank Haris was also doing his part this morning.
Riding around on his bladed John Deere tractor, he cleared away snow from the sidewalks at Grant Elementary School.
“We’ve been working all day and all night,” Haris said. “We do all the schools — twelve-hour shifts since Monday.”
Haris said this is the worst winter he’s seen in quite a while, but he likes the way everything looks with all the snow.
Enough is enough
Joel Swanson, a Hickman High School student shoveling at Lifestyles furniture, isn’t a Columbia native.
“I’ve only been in Columbia for about five years, but before that it was New Mexico,” Swanson said. “Big change. It snows every other week here. And don’t get me wrong, I like the change in weather, I do. But at this point, I’m just getting tired of it."
Taco Bell employee Cameron Neal had a similar attitude.
Neal said he’s been on a shoveling streak since Monday.
“This is crazy,” he said. “I keep wishing for it to stop, but it just keeps coming back.”
Taking matters into his own hands
Resident Richard Maseles, an attorney in Jefferson City, said he knew the city wasn’t going to solve his problems for him — so he cleared off part of his street.
“The city policy doesn’t consider this a tertiary street, and I’m guessing that most streets in Columbia aren’t,” Maseles said. “But I knew that Garth was a secondary street, so all I needed was about 100 feet. I told myself if I could make it there, I’m out.”
Maseles said he cleared about 50 feet of the street himself but eventually asked someone with a tractor to finish the rest.
“The city didn’t come until around midnight on Thursday,” Maseles said.
One downtown business manager shoveled the snow with indifference.
David Eich, who manages Chipotle on Ninth Street, said the snow hasn’t caused a big change in his schedule.
"I don’t mind it,” Eich said. “It’s an adventure."