Hamiltonian has had it with unplowed streets
Maria Allwine of Hamilton copied Getting There Friday night on the following letter to city Councilman Robert Curran. I think she speaks for a lot of people.
Dear Mr. Curran:
I appreciate your telephone response to my email to you of several days ago; however, I have been unable to get through to 311. I have been calling off and on since Monday and get a fast busy. Our phones are working fine. Obviously 311 is a tad overloaded.
What I would appreciate your answer to is:
1. Why should I be expected to request city services for which my taxpayer dollars are supposed to provide me?
2. How would I or anyone else be expected to know to do this – and to call 311?
3. Why is it absolutely impossible to get 311?
4. When should my elderly neighbors and I expect to see the first snow plow on our streets?
My husband and I, both of us in our late 50s with serious back problems, have spent 10 hours shoveling not only our sidewalks and driveways, but our streets as well - twice. We can just about handle our sidewalks and driveways, but there is no way we can shovel our street – twice – without help. We have shelled out $165 for the help we needed to shovel over 5 feet of snow from the street in front of our house - twice. I am yet again “laid off” from my job and can little afford this expense, along with the rise in my mortgage payment due to the increase in property taxes.
This is, to put it mildly, outrageous. I grew up in Baltimore and the streets were always – and I mean – always plowed. In fact I grew up not far from where we live now and never experienced such an abysmal and pathetic lack of response from the city.
For the governor to excoriate us for complaining about not getting what we are paying for is outrageous and arrogant, but typical for this governor. All I want from him is for him to shut his mouth and get to work making sure that everyone’s streets is plowed regardless of who lives in what neighborhood.
My husband and I went out today and noticed, which was no surprise, that the streets in Homeland, most of them narrower than ours, were plowed quite nicely thank you. It is obvious that our city officials determine who gets those services according to the amount of money and votes they feel deserve those services. For some neighborhoods to be completely clear and others, like Hamilton, to have yet to see a plow, is nothing but an obvious choice being made by city officials. Sorry, but that’s the truth and the only way to look at it.
We in the Hamilton area have yet to see one snow plow since last Friday. Old Harford Road, a secondary and heavily used road, remains one lane only, a dangerous situation. Louise, Marietta, Hemlock, Westfield, Hamlet, etc. – this is a neighborhood of many elderly people who cannot afford to pay for what the city owes them. My husband and I have gone door to door to go to the store for our neighbors and to make sure they are all right but the one thing we have not been able to do – after we’ve dealt with our street, sidewalks and driveway – is shovel for them. We are exhausted and in a good deal of back pain today.
You can bet that once this city is back to normal, weather-wise, I will be making some waves over the absolute lack of caring and interest shown this – and many other – areas. We pay the same taxes as everyone else and expect the same services as everyone else. If the city has money for tax breaks for developers who build hotels, it damn sure better find the money to plow our streets.