Boulder snow removal rules

Residents and businesses have 24 hours after the end of a storm to clear sidewalks in public rights-of-way of snow and ice.

To find out the official time that a storm ended, the city directs residents to visit and look for the last reference to "snow" under the weather column. The next listed observation is the cutoff time for the snowfall, with enforcement beginning 24 hours later.

Boulder police formally warned 89 residents that they failed to clear snow from their sidewalks following this week's storm, but those homeowners weren't the only ones tardy in shoveling away the remnants of a white Christmas.

City officials on Friday admitted that due to a mix-up and a staff shortage over the holidays, the sidewalks and paths at several local parks were not cleared of snow within the same 24-hour period the city enforces on its residents.

Boulder spokeswoman Jennifer Bray said the city's policy is to hold itself to the same codes as the general public, which means snow must be cleared from all walkways within 24 hours after the conclusion of any accumulating snowfall.

But Bray said only a skeleton crew of parks workers were on duty Christmas Day after Boulder saw a record 6.7 inches of snow. The full park staff returned to removing snow on Wednesday, but with several crews handling temporary routes, Bray said some parks were overlooked.

"We realize there were some gaps in service for this particular storm," Bray said. "We do apologize for any inconvenience."

Bray said paths or sidewalks at Howard Hueston, Melody and Pineview parks were either missed entirely or only partially cleared. Bray said supervisors went out to the sites when they realized the mistake and all of the paths were cleared by Friday.

Boulder police spokeswoman Kim Kobel said the storm ended at 9 a.m. Christmas morning, which meant snow had to be removed from sidewalks by 9 a.m. Wednesday. Kobel said 89 warnings for failing to remove snow were issued to residents for the Christmas Day storm, although nobody was ticketed.

As for the city, Bray said the parks department has reviewed its schedules and assignments during holidays and ironed out the wrinkles.

"We reviewed the whole process," Bray said. "The staff is usually great about it. This just fell at the right time with the short staff due to the holiday."

Contact Camera Staff Writer Mitchell Byars at 303-473-1329 or