New snow-clearing regulations for Stephenville

Frank Gale
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Penalties increased tenfold for violators

Mayor Tom O’Brien talks about the new snowclearing regulations during a meeting of the Stephenville town council on Tuesday.

STEPHENVILLE  Clayton Moraze, owner of Hartery’s Restaurant on Main Street in Stephenville, is having trouble this year keeping up with snow removal.

Town of Stephenville Snow Clearing Regulations 2014, which were adopted at a general town council meeting on Tuesday, could even make matters worse for him.

While Moraze said he wants to have a good relationship with the town, he blames the town plow for piling snow in front of and on the side of his premises.

He said early each morning when there is a snowfall, he has a local contractor clear out the snow from the front and on the back of the restaurant, then the town’s snowplow comes by and piles it up there again.

He said it seems that snow from further up Main Street is brought down his way and the town plow pushes it in front of his store and towards the back when the operator takes the turn on Churchill Street.

“I don’t know if it’s because of my location but I won’t be able to operate a business if I have to get it plowed out two or three times a day. It’s hard on a business when the money you made that day has to go into snow clearing,” Moraze said.

Residents and businesses that do not abide by the new snowclearing regulations in Stephenville can expect to pay hefty fines, which have increased tenfold.

Mayor Tom O’Brien said the regulations haven’t been updated since June 15, 1989 and that council felt it was time for a change, especially since some businesses don’t clear the snow from in front of their properties.

“You have a big percentage that do keep their properties cleared and others that don’t. We appreciate the businesses and residents that follow the snow clearing regulations, but we (council members) agreed to and have to address those that don’t,” he said.

In regards to residents, O’Brien was referring to those people that deposit snow on streets in the town.

He said the new regulations are specifically aimed at these problems with residents and some businesses. He said the former fine of $25 for first offence and second of $50 for subsequent offences just wasn’t cutting it and council is hoping the increase to $250 for the first offence should make a difference.

Those in default of paying that fine could be facing a period of imprisonment not exceeding 30 days. For a second offence the penalty is now $500, or in default, to a period of imprisonment not exceeding 60 days. For subsequent offences, $1,000, or in default, to a period of imprisonment not exceeding 90 days.

O’Brien admitted there were few, if any, penalties levied for such offences in the past and that people were talked to or sent letters.

Now he vows that once the regulations have been published and come into effect, that they will be acted upon and that the penalties will be enforced.

“The purpose of updating the regulations is so everyone can see them and realize the consequences of not following them,” he said.

Moraze said if he’s forced to get the snow cleared away then he will, but believes the town has to take some of the responsibility in it being piled up there.

Organizations: Stephenville Snow Clearing Regulations 2014

Geographic location: Stephenville, Churchill Street

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Recent comments

  • Tessa
    February 21, 2014 - 15:09

    In some cities, snow on the main street is trucked away. It seems very unfair that we are expected to clear away the snow brought by the town's plows, after having cleared away our own in the morning. In residential areas, why aren't snowblowers being used more often instead of plows going over and over the roads pushing snow and huge ice junks into people's driveways three and four times a day?

  • Devil's Advocate
    February 07, 2014 - 21:19

    Most places I've lived (off island), the streets and sidewalks are cleared by the city/town. Especially on any main business drag.

  • Interesting
    February 07, 2014 - 10:29

    Interesting that Town of Stephenville has an issue with businesses… who is responsible for all other other sidewalks and side roads?! There was one day the plow did not visit my street, and heaven help you if you are a walker. Sidewalks are rarely clean.

  • Wake Up Stephenville
    February 06, 2014 - 18:00

    Really? Municipal ByLaws/Policies can send you to jail? This needs to be checked out. And as for snowclearing, perhaps the Town of SVille should actually do some. It's a crime for any person with a disability or the elderly.

  • stephenville driver
    February 05, 2014 - 14:17

    I know the town does the best it can when it comes to snow, but what happens when 2 vehicles have a hard time passing each other on main street cause there is so much snow piled up and the road get more narrow. Most businesses don't clean the snow from in front of their doors and many people fall once it turns into ice. Hartery’s is one of the places that keeps it well clean, cant say much for other businesses. There has to be a better way to clear the snow from main street so vehicles and pedestrians can go about their day alot easier.

  • mellie
    February 05, 2014 - 11:57

    I would like to add the town needs to look at the extra hardship they place on residents alike . Snow clearing by the town well they can learn some lessons.Plese clear the roads back some distance.They own so many feet from the centre of the road..Instead of passing and diging in the snow banks filling in peoples driveways fill them in once and get it over with.

  • mellie
    February 05, 2014 - 11:41

    I think Stephenville is the most unfriendly Town any were when it comes to its attitude towards men and animals .I do believe its a money grab and they have the person who will go well beyond to enforce the regulations.

  • Richard
    February 05, 2014 - 10:57

    I visited Stephenville last Summer and quite frankly I found that the food service businesses were booming. Also, the prices were higher than anywhere else in Atlantic Canada. The service was poor and overall...UNFRIENDLY...with the exception of a few including Hartery's which had polite and friendly staff. Considering what we pay for snow clearing and taxes here on the mainland you guys get away cheap. The businesses of Stephenville have become greedy...we don't all work in Fort Mac ! Complaining over what should be the cost of doing business is in my opinion lame!

  • Stephenville Guy
    February 05, 2014 - 06:28

    I am sorry to tell Mr. Moraze that it is winter and during the season of winter we have snow. Yes, I understand that snow clearing can be expensive however it is a cost that all businesses have to incur.