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Responsibility for snow unclear between some businesses and Omaha

Posted at 6:39 PM, Feb 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-28 19:50:44-05

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — If you live in Omaha, you've been warned. If your sidewalk hasn't been cleared of snow, the city could charge you if crews have to shovel what's left of Saturday's blizzard.

But there are some gray areas when it comes to who's responsible for what. 3 News Now's studio is connected to a next door fast food restaurant by an icy sidewalk. It's the restaurant's property, but it's not in front of their building.

"Most people have made an effort to clean their sidewalks, but there's a lot of snow packed under there," Robert Hyatt said.

Hyatt walked from 96th to 108th Street to grab lunch.

"It's not easy walking around," Hyatt said. "I got to walk quite a bit on the street."

Even in Benson, it's becoming unclear who's responsible for what.

"I mean, I hate winter to begin with, but this is laughable," Alex Jochim said.

Jochim had to hurdle a pile of snow off 58th and Maple Streets. Then he had to step through knee-deep snow on his way to work.

"This is one of the worst cities to be a pedestrian or [for] anybody that doesn't drive a car," Jochim said. "This [snow] makes it worse."

The sidewalk Jochim stepped through is outside a Big Bear convenience store. Manager J.P. Patterson says he's done his part clearing the lot. He says it's the city's sidewalk to clean.

"It's blocking [the sidewalk]," Patterson said. "It's dangerous for people walking and driving."

Patterson says he's heard plenty from customers.

"I've had several complaints," Patterson said. "They're saying it's hard to get into the parking lot, the snow's so high. I say it's the city's job, not my job to do it."

Bottom line is that some sidewalks are still covered because between people, businesses and even the city, it's unclear who's responsible for shoveling some properties.