Town of Romulus to look at sidewalk maintenance


Lakeshore Landing residents brought their concerns about broken sidewalks in Romulus to the December Town of Romulus Board meeting.

Town Supervisor David Kaiser opened the floor to the petitioners. Kaiser informed the group that ownership of the sidewalks isn’t clear.

Town attorney Steven Getman addressed the ownership question. "At this point it is still being looked at. From the surveys, it appears that the sidewalks are in the town's right-of-way. That does not necessarily mean that the town is liable. NYS law and town law as well as various court cases have often shifted liability to the homeowner.”

Kaiser wondered how that would impact the current issue. Getman responded, "If the issue is the trees, they are on town property; as such, the town can cut them down. If they are hanging over the sidewalk, the town can cut them down. If they are hanging over the street making it difficult for traffic to pass or making it impossible to plow snow, the town can cut them down. The town can trim the trees to allow easy passage of traffic. In the case of the sidewalks, if the town owns them free and clear, the town could tear them up, or they could choose to maintain them and impose that charge on the property owners.”

Getman continued to explain the lengthy process of petitioning the Town Board to take care of the sidewalks through forming a sidewalk district.

He suggested that the homeowners' association might want to poll their residents to see what they want done before venturing further.

Getman suggested, "A lot of research is needed. Perhaps I should draw up a local law which can be presented at the January meeting.” Kaiser agreed.

• Steven Getman Attorney Franklin & Gabriel Law Office

• Steven Getman County Assigned Counsel, 2008-2011

• Steven Getman Seneca County Stop-DWI Coordinator, 2007

• Steven Getman Seneca County Attorney, 2002-2007

• Steven Getman Seneca County Social Services Attorney, 1995-2001

• Steven Getman Attorney Midey & Swinehart, 1995-2001

• Steven Getman Seneca County Public Defender, 1995

• Steven Getman Seneca County Law Guardian Panel, 1992-1995

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