Case for driveway snow clearing should be taken to budget meetings

Telkwa taxpayer Harvey Kroetsch had some questions for the Village when he arrived as a delegation to their last meeting.

  • Feb. 2, 2011 8:00 p.m.

Telkwa taxpayer Harvey Kroetsch had some questions for the Village when he arrived as a delegation to their last meeting.

Namely, he was concerned about the community’s snow clearing efforts. In a letter addressed to the council, he wrote, “Is it not possible that a blade truck or a back hoe follow the grader and/or the sand truck, for the purpose of cleaning out each ploughed-in driveway?”

He said in his letter that there are cases where people have to shovel the end of their driveway twice in a day, if they’re are even capable of doing that.

Councillors replied at the meeting to him that if enough tax payers consider that service a priority they can make the case at upcoming budget meetings.

“The services are flexible so if enough people feel that’s a priority the time to bring it up is during the budget discussion which is coming up,” said Taylor Bachrach.

Telkwa CAO Kim Martinsen told Kroetsch that prior to 1997 the Village had tried to clear snow rides on people’s driveways but only when there was time to do so.

“Since then they’ve only done it if they have time to do it and generally speaking when there’s a lot of snow they don’t have time to do it,” she said.

Kroetsch doesn’t think that sort of clearing work would be an extra burden to the Village and wondered what the town’s crews do all week.

“We only have three on-site employees and they’re extremely busy,” said Mayor Carman Graf.

Councillor Rimas Zitkauskus emphasized the time-permitting aspect of clearing the end of driveways.

“I think our public works people try as much as they can to be cautious of the fact that there are some residences over here who have a hard time cleaning their driveways and when time is available and they can I believe they do do it but it’s more of a courtesy rather than an obligation as a part of the village,” he said.

He noted the Village has a sign up for seniors to put their name on the list for crews to put priority on snow clearing for, as time permits for them.

He said that he calculated that to spend two minutes per driveway clearing it, over all the driveways in town, it would mean an extra 15 hours of work.

“We do the best we can with what we have, Harvey,” said Graf.