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Town hitting up plow guys for money

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by grandview, Jul 6, 2009.

  1. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Updated: 07/06/09 08:04 AM
    Just the next town over from me.

    East Aurora considers fees for snow plow drivers

    East Aurora is looking to crack down on private snowplow operators hired by village residents and businesses to clear driveways.

    The village has proposed — though it delayed taking action last month — requiring snowplow contractors to register with the village for a permit and pay a $25 per plow truck fee, starting next winter.

    “It’s just another way for government to get into our pockets,” a private plow operator told the Village Board at a recent meeting. “All we’re trying to do is make a few extra bucks.”

    Village officials defend their proposal by noting that in the dead of winter, snowplow contractors often are out doing their job during the night and end up leaving snow jammed in the streets and on sidewalks. They say the snow piles make the work of village public works crews more difficult the following morning when they must clear the streets and sidewalks for schoolchildren and pedestrians.

    “It’s sort of like snowplow jockeys — packing in and out all night long,” said Village Administrator Kimberly Reichert. “We want them to register with the village so we know who is plowing.”

    Other plow operators worried about the impact that such a requirement could have on their insurance.

    Other critics questioned how village police would enforce such a requirement in the middle of the night. Village staff responded that vehicle stickers proving registration would be created and designed so that they reflect light and are visible at night. They would be placed in the truck’s front window.

    “How are two nighttime patrolmen going to enforce this?” said village resident Myla LeBLanc. “I think this is unfair targeting of plow drivers.”

    Plow driver Dave Closs questioned the merit behind a new fee. “How do you keep track of the bad people who put snow on the sidewalks? I don’t see what good this fee will do.”

    Some plow drivers apparently were worried about the impact of possibly having to buy commercial insurance.

    “Residential auto insurance will not cover this. You’re way out in left field,” plow driver Don Pressing, who operates a fleet of 10 trucks, told the Village Board.

    Local attorney Arthur Giacalone questioned how residents plowing out a neighbor’s driveway would be affected by the proposal and how the village would handle people blowing snow into the street when village code forbids people from piling snow. He said he found the proposal to be “ambiguous.”

    Reichert said the village will not require commercial insurance, but the village does need proof that plow operators have some form of insurance. She also said it would be likely that a $25 fee per truck would be charged, but that the fee might be capped for fleets that exceed a certain number of trucks.

    Trustee Al Kasprzak noted that plow drivers have faced permit requirements in other communities for years.

    However, Trustee Patrick McDonnell said he thinks the village is “trying to micro- manage legislation.”
  2. miltonplower

    miltonplower Senior Member
    from ontario
    Messages: 160

    it's the government what do u expect there always trying to get into our pockets!!
  3. samjr

    samjr Senior Member
    Messages: 481

    Thats bs

    THATS BS whats to say the guy in the next drive puts his snow over to your drive and the town come after u to cleen it up ya thats BS
  4. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    I should of mentioned that my own town has had a plow permit for at least 30 yrs. Not that I ever bought one.
  5. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    You're the original rebel
  6. nosnownogo

    nosnownogo Member
    Messages: 47

    The city across the river from Montreal has a by law that says

    Any property owner must ensure that the person who carries out snow-removal operations of his property has a permit to do so.

    Snow-removal permit

    The contractor who carries out snow-removal operations on private properties using a road vehicle for profit must first obtain a permit to do so. The permit costs $125 for the first vehicle and $30 for any additional vehicle(s).

    The permit is valid for one snow-removal season, from November 1 of one year to April 15 of the next. It is non transferable, except for another vehicle owned by the same contractor when the vehicle for which it was issued is out of service. However, Ville de Longueuil must approve the transfer..

    To obtain a permit, the contractor must supply a copy of the vehicle registration for which the permit is requested as well as a copy of the letters patent and the declaration of the company name of the contractor, if necessary. A complete list of clients located on the territory of Ville de Longueuil and their addresses is also required. The contractor must supply updated client lists on December 15 and January 15
  7. Longae29

    Longae29 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,953

    I think its inevitable that this sort of crap keeps happening, especially with the moron we have leading our country (in the wrong direction).

    But to me this is the alarming part of the article:

    I think ole Don should be thanking his village if this makes him get insurance. I dont really see the correlation between a permit and insurance, but I can't see how anyone would think about plowing without insurance.
  8. wild bill

    wild bill PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,239

    hey what do you expect ,or democratic big brother is looking out for our best interests ,and he wants to spread the wealth !payup i don't know about you but all i got in my pocket now is dust Bunnie's .:realmad:
  9. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    As Long said above, the guy should be thanking his village. I for a long time have thought it is a good idea, this industry has so many "businesses" working "to make a few extra bucks".
    Anything that can be done to raise the entry level, protect consumers & increase the quality of or business. Every year we hear (or see on the news) how "XYZ" doesn't show etc.
    If the municipality will legitimatly enfore the sicker(permit), check for proper insurance, references or BBB complaints. Give out a permit # just like plummers, etc, put it on your contracts so they can keep track of who complys who doesn't. I will completly support it, if there just looking to take the money & do nothing for it thats BS.
  10. oman1999

    oman1999 Senior Member
    Messages: 198

    I see this as a good move for all areas. Provided the fees and requirements are within acceptable limits. Everyone complains about the lowballers, flybynighters and those that do poor work. One way to help the problem is permits. Just like plates, insurance, beacons, etc. it helps to ensure that the client and the contractor are protected.

    I know there are a ton of "Snow Removal" businesses in my area that don't have insurance, have trucks that aren't inspected and cause all sorts of problems. The cost of the license is justified to the customer and passed along. If the client gets ticketed by the municipality because a lowballer is droping snow in the street, they'll soon realize the value of a professional company. Hopefully the city would use the funds for public works and street maintenance...I doubt it though.
  11. the new boss 92

    the new boss 92 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,989

    BS, who will actually purchases one unless they really crack down on it?
  12. Camden

    Camden PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,604

    Excellent post. Our industry is under-regulated to say the least. I know I could make a lot more each season if I didn't have to compete against all the non-legit operators in my area. I'm sure there are a lot of other people on this site who could say the same thing.
  13. Nascar24

    Nascar24 Senior Member
    Messages: 645


    I know the majority of the DPW employees and Director in my community as well as most of the surrounding towns, I also know most of the contractors, subs and idependents in the area. With that being said there are good and bad operators out there, and the main reason the communities that have a permit fee is not for the revenue, it is to keep track of who is providing snow removal service. The DPW directors over the years have been wasting too much time, money, and effort, dealing with, and cleaning up after the bad operators! The permits have been a way to weed out the bad operators and fly by nights who give the good guy's the bad rap. I know annually all applicants must appear before the Board of Selectman for approval, 99% of the time they are approved within a 15 minute process, but the 1% do not get their permit for past negative incidents or performance ( property damage, leaving snow on a public by way or non performance on an executed contract). I would honestly say the community generates less than $1000 from the fees and barely breaks even from the oversight. The winners in this process are the people in community and the legit operators, they see the low ballers fail and overall the roads are a much safer place.

    Just an observation in my little world. ussmileyflag
  14. Kramer

    Kramer Senior Member
    Messages: 386

    So what about the guy who does a decent job for a few neighbors and makes a few hundred bucks a year?

    The plow business is difficult enough when you figure repairs, getting up at 3am and of course support issues such as taxes and insurance.

    All this does is put a hardship on homeowners as they now have to bear the extra cost to move a few inches of snow out of their way to get to work.

    A lot of residentials consist of people that cant do it themselves--- why tack on extra money to a person already struggling to make it who cant do it them selves?

    Some people are already pushed by the mere fact that they need to clear their sidewalks 24 hrs after a storm.

    Heres an idea...enforce the laws already there to keep losers from pushing snow in the street. Do you really think that paying $100/yr is going to make a bad plow guy a good operator?

    You might be right--its not about the money---its about controlling everyone.
  15. fireside

    fireside Senior Member
    Messages: 726

    In ct you need a home improvement contractor reg number to do any work on residential property.(landscaping, snowplowing to additions) The cost is 160 per year. Most guy's here don't have them driveways, commercial property you need nothing. The state controls all HIC numbers all complaints are handled by dept of comsumer protection.