Craig Editorial Board, January 2009 to April 2009
- Bryce Jacobson, newspaper representative
- Jennifer L. Grubbs, newspaper representative
- Collin Smith, newspaper representative
- Marianna Raftopoulos, community representative
- Luke Schafer, community representative
- John Smith, community representative
- Lois Wymore, community representative
Craig residents are all too familiar with snow-covered sidewalks, streets and parking spaces. We know to walk slowly and watch where we step.
After all, there may be ice lurking beneath that light dusting of snow, causing us to slip and fall, or the snow may be deeper than we think, making us sink down into it when we step.
But while we cannot do anything about the weather and all of the snow and ice it brings, we can control the safety and look of our city by taking the time or spending the money to clear away piles of snow, or break up ice. We also can make sure our city and county officials and business owners know that we expect not to have to park across the street because of a snow berm left by plows, or potentially slip on a gutter or sidewalk covered in snow and ice.
Our city depends on the tourists who travel through Craig in the fall and winter, and one of the ways we can keep them coming back is by making their stay pleasant - and safe. That includes paying attention to how things look throughout the city as our visitors are driving around, and making sure they can get where they're going without scrapes or bruises.
And in these trying economic times, it is even more important to draw customers into businesses. An important part of this is making sure people of all ages - whether tourists or residents - can get to the businesses. That may mean being able to find parking, or crossing a gutter safely, or not worrying about slipping and falling. It is important to take care of this in a timely and appropriate manner.
Another thing to remember about snow removal is that we all benefit from working together to deal with it.
So many people may get hung up on who is or is not paying for a fair share of the cost that it derails the whole process. We all need to work together to make snow removal work, pitching in where we can to help others.
On that note, we think the city, county and state need to better coordinate plowing efforts to ensure that on-street parking does not get taken over by snow berms.
These berms can make it hard to get across the gutter and onto the sidewalk, or they can completely displace parking spots. In these cases, plowing is not enough. Removal efforts are needed, too, with the snow hauled off the street, gutter and sidewalk. We have the resources to do this, at all three levels of government; we just need to make this a priority. We know this may post logistical problems at first, but it is worth exploring as an option.
One way to alleviate this might be spreading out the snow piles on warmer days (any day when the temperature is above freezing), such that the snow and ice can melt and drain, leaving them clear until the next storm blows through.
And residents should do their part, too, by clearing sidewalks and de-icing where appropriate.
We all must work together to ensure that our streets and sidewalks are safe for all. Our residents and businesses are depending on it - both for safety and appearance.