ELKHART — In a press statement earlier this week, Elkhart Mayor Dick Moore asked residents to continue shoveling snow from city sidewalks on their properties.
A city ordinance requires homeowners and occupants of apartments and homes to remove snow from city sidewalks along their properties.
In response to the story, questions and comments poured in to The Elkhart Truth's Facebook page. Here are answers to five questions about the ordinance.
1. Is the ordinance currently being enforced?
No, and according to Arvis Dawson, executive assistant to the mayor, there are no plans to enforce the ordinance right now. As weather conditions improve, city officials will resume enforcement, Dawson said. Moore said in his statement that obeying the ordinance is "not just the law, it is the right thing to do."
2. If the ordinance is enforced, how much could I be fined for a violation?
The current fine is $25.
3. How are ordinances enforced?
Codes and ordinances are typically enforced in response to a complaint or if a violation is observed by city staff as they patrol the community, according to the city of Elkhart website.
4. What if I'm physically unable to shovel?
Property owners may be exempt from the snow removal ordinance based on age and/or physical disability. An application for exemption must be filled out and submitted to the building department. The exemption only counts toward owner-occupied property within the city limits. That form can be downloaded at the city of Elkhart website.
5. I want to report a snow removal ordinance violation. Who should I contact?
To report a violation contact the city's building and code enforcement department at 294-5471, ext. 114, or fill out a complaint form online.