New legislation could reduce snow clearing

New legislation could reduce snow clearing.

BOISE - Legislation is being introduced that could make it even harder for us to get our streets and sidewalks cleared when it snows. 

The Ada County Highway District says clearing snow from side streets that don't lead to a major roadway was never supposed to be part of the deal.They want the maintenance definition changed for highway districts.

ACHD is backing the bill. Officials there say adding snow removal to the maintenance definition for highway districts back in 2013 forces them to do work that was not expected by the Legislature under House Bill 321.

RELATED: Behind-the-scenes of ACHD operations during "Snowmaggedon"

Spokesperson for Mayor David Bieter, Mike Journee, says the city of Boise is against the move.

"It's kid of disheartening, in fact, after what we saw this winter for ACHD to be coming back and asking to not be held accountable for these kinds of operations," said Journee.

He says the city received well over 1,000 phone calls during the snowstorms from people wanting to know why their neighborhood roads weren't being cleared.

RELATED: More snow, more problems for residents on side streets

During the string of storms we talked with ACHD spokesperson Craig Quintana about not being able to keep up.

"We're set up to respond to the norm winter snow event, this being a little abnormal," said Quintana. "I don't think you plan for the exception, you plan for the standard or the rule of the day."

He explained that residential streets are the last priority. Under the new introduced legislation it appears it wouldn't be one at all. 

The Idaho House Ways and Means Committee agreed to introduce the bill. It does not yet appear to have a set day for consideration.

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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