Tri States Public Radio Staff
Email Sent to Business Owners
Sat January 18, 2014
Status Quo for Keokuk Snow Removal
Snow removal from the sidewalks along Main Street in downtown Keokuk will remain "as is" for the time being.
The city recently sent an email with a "friendly reminder" to property owners asking them to avoid using large vehicles to clear their sidewalks.
The idea behind prohibiting trucks or construction-type equipment is to prevent damage to sidewalks, street lights or trash cans.
The email prompted several business owners and contractors to attend Thursday night's Keokuk City Council meeting.
They said the large vehicles are needed to move excessive amounts of snow, adding that any damage would be covered by their own insurance.
There was also talk of how the city puts large vehicles on the sidewalks, so the business owners and contractors said it is somewhat of a double standard to ask residents to not do that.
The city council eventually said the email went too far, much to the pleasure of At-Large Alderman John Helenthal.
"If we start having problems where things are getting torn up and things are getting out-of-hand," says Helenthal, "we will have to address it. I would just not want to micro-manage if we don't have to."
It is illegal to drive large vehicles on sidewalks in Keokuk, but the city chooses not to enforce that law when it comes to snow removal or similar operations.