Heads up: snow-plowing soon

Things are changing in District 3. Along with the color of the leaves, the weather is certainly changing. We’ve already had a dusting of snow on Sonora Pass and more will soon follow at lower elevations. With snow inevitably comes snow-plowing and an increase in emails and calls to the county.

As usual, Caltrans maintains Hwy 108 while the county maintains the county-maintained roads. Some roads are not county-maintained and residents have formed community service areas to make sure streets are plowed by private contractors. If your street is not getting plowed, it’s possible you may not live on a county-maintained road. Please call Public Works at 209-533-5601 to find out. They can also tell you about a new way for privately owned roads to fund plowing and other maintainance.

As we promised last year in District 3 community meetings on snow-plowing, the county is making a concerted effort to inform folks about restrictions on street parking this year. Snow on county-maintained roads means Public Works will be actively enforcing restrictions against parking on some streets in the county – they’re bringing on a retired law enforcement officer to help ensure streets are unobstructed and clear. That means ticketing and towing. Public Works will keep us in the loop on calls/emails about issues/problems and their resolution.

Public Works will send out flyers and get the word out to newspaper and radio. They will also appreciate your assistance to distribute and post flyers in your community. If you can help, please email Carol Jackson.  

Does this mean that you will have no complaints about snow-plowing from here on out? We’ll see. Hopefully they will at least be reduced. Public Works has discussed the concerns expressed in our meetings with snow-plow operators and they will do their best to get to your street as quickly and safely as they can. Please be patient, but certainly let Public Works know if there is a problem by calling 209-533-5601.

If you experience snow-plow related damages to your property, contact the County Counsel’s office at 533-5517 to request a claim form. Claims are reviewed and evaluated by the County Counsel’s office for possible reimbursement for damages. Photo documentation of driveways in advance of the season would be a good idea, as would be photos of the damage.

We really need the moisture so we hope it’s a big snow year. But if it is, expect some inconvenience due to limited resources. We are thankful that Congress passed legislation for some critical funding that goes to maintenance of streets and includes snow plowing. That said, it’s never quite enough.

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I like going places: out West, west of the West, and all the way around the back of the globe to the East. I like to go by train, plane, automobile, horseback. Whatever. And I like writing about what I see, feel, hear, smell, and touch all along the way and once I get there.

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