McLean County school district urges residents to clear sidewalks for students

By WEEK Producer

February 11, 2014 Updated Feb 11, 2014 at 10:45 PM CDT

NORMAL, Ill. -- With more snow on the way, school officials in McLean County are asking residents to help keep sidewalks clear for students walking to class or the bus stop.

In Bloomington, residents are required by ordinance to clear sidewalk snow by 10 a.m.

However in Normal that rule doesn't exist. That means schools depend on residents to be neighborly and clear their sidewalks for students.

"We want our students to be able to be safe and have a safe way to get to and from the bus stop and to and from school,” said Unit 5 Superintendent Gary Niehaus.

With the large volume of snow this winter, some areas have not been kept clear but officials don't feel an ordinance for Normal is the answer.

"Usually you notify those property owners that haven't complied and then you come back and inspect the property again and issue a fine. It doesn't get the snow removed,” said Normal City Manager Mark Peterson.

Unit 5 covers more than 220 square miles and Superintendent Niehaus said that would be impossible to monitor. He said it is too soon to decide if an ordinance is really necessary.

"We've had two winters where we've only taken one snow day and now this year we've got all this snow and so I think everyone should just wait and see what the next winter brings and learn from this winter and hopefully we won't have another one like this for a while,” he said.

To submit a comment on this article, your email address is required. We respect your privacy and your email will not be visible to others nor will it be added to any email lists.