What’s your snow removal policy?

Take the time to understand the city’s snow removal process.

by Evan Henke

Off-street driveways are large and catch a lot of snow, especially after the major storms we have experienced this year. In the University of Minnesota area, it is probably common that landlords assume responsibility for removing snow from driveways and sidewalks, especially for properties with many sub-units. Whether landlords effectively clear tenantsâÄô driveways âÄî if they assume a legal duty to provide such a critical service âÄî can be the subject of heated debate, and a lack of clarity surrounding snow responsibilities can become a strain on relations between the two parties. A case in point occurred Tuesday, when after coming home from class and noticing my parking lot had been plowed, I realized that the plow had neglected to clear a large area of snow behind my vehicle and had actually tripled the amount of snow behind my car, leaving it completely snowed in, despite clearing the rest of the lot. When I complained to my landlord, a bitter argument broke out, and we are now working on solving the problem civilly, albeit in a wounded tenant-landlord relationship. I recommend all readers discuss the responsibilities and expectations of the snow removal process and how problems such as mine will be dealt with if they arise before signing a lease this season. Strained relations with a landlord are almost as big a pain in the neck as being snowed in. Evan Henke University graduate student