Baltimore County Law on snow shoveling sidewalks is not well-known — but it is important!
Baltimore County law states that sidewalks MUST be shoveled within 24 hours after a snow storm. This is laid out in the Baltimore County Code of Ordinances, “Roads, Bridges and Sidewalks, 18-3-107 Removal of Snow and Ice.”
Baltimore County relies on reports from the public when sidewalks have not been cleared. A letter is sent out by the Department of Public Works after a complaint has been received.
If a citation is made, it comes with a $25 fine.
Here is how it currently reads as of 1/21/15 (things can always change) (and a link to the code: )
“§ 18-3-107. REMOVAL OF SNOW AND ICE.
(a) Required. Within 24 hours after the fall of any snow, each person or public institution occupying or using a residential, commercial, or industrial building in any manner or for any purpose shall remove and clear away, or cause to be removed and cleared away, the snow from the foot pavements fronting the respective houses, stores, shops, stables, houses of worship, lots occupied by any buildings, unoccupied buildings, and unoccupied lots that run along streets in the county.
(b) Manner of removal. In removing or clearing the snow, the person may not:
(1) Obstruct the passage of water in gutters along the street; or
(2) Throw the snow on the paved portion of the street.
(c) County may remove. If the person required to remove and clear snow under this section does not remove and clear the snow, the county may do so at the expense of the person.
(d) Expense a lien.
(1) If the person does not pay the expense incurred by the county for snow removal under this section, the expense shall be a lien on the property in the same manner as taxes, and shall be collected in the same manner provided by law for the collection of taxes.
(2) Charges and assessments imposed under this subsection are benefit charges and may not exceed a reasonable estimate of the special benefit conferred on the property.
(e) Removal of ice. The person required to remove and clear snow also shall keep ice and every type of obstruction out of the gutters leading to and off the pavements or sidewalks located in front or at the rear or sides of the same buildings.
(f) Penalty. In addition to the other remedies provided in this section, a person who fails to comply with this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to a fine of $25 for each failure and an additional $25 for each day the obstruction continues.
(1988 Code, § 31-8) (Bill No. 3, 1990, § 2; Bill No. 66-01, § 2, 7-1-2004)Another item of importance to note — you are not allowed to throw snow in paved portions of the street, or block drains or gutters in the street.”
Make sure, if you have sidewalks, to have them cleared within 24 hours of the end of the snowstorm!
Here are details about the Baltimore City sidewalk snow removal ordinance.