Cornwall woman feels dumped on by snow and city

A large pile of snow sits at the end of a Fifth Street East driveway in Cornwall, Ont. on Monday, Feb. 13, 2017. The homeowner, Tracy Champagne, is upset the city dismissed her requests for help after someone dumped the pile of snow at the foot of her driveway during the weekend storm. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

CORNWALL – A Cornwall woman is upset over how she claims she was treated by city staff after a “massive” pile of snow was dumped in her driveway.

In an interview with Cornwall Newswatch, Tracy Champagne said her concerns were dismissed by a city foreman Monday after nearly five feet of snow ended up blocking in her entrance on Fifth Street East between Pitt and Sydney Streets.

Many streets have been dealing with massive piles of snow after a snowstorm which started Sunday and lasted through Monday morning.

Champagne said the city worker, who wouldn’t offer his name, told her that she would have to hire a bucket truck or a backhoe to get rid of the pile and there was nothing he could do.

“I called the City of Cornwall. They told me there’s nothing we can really do about it, it’s obviously your neighbour who did it,” Champagne said. Champagne said she gets along with all of her neighbours and she couldn’t have constructed the five foot pile herself as she’s off work with a back injury.

“I love my city and it takes a lot to get me mad but this upset me enough to phone the City of Cornwall,” she told CNW. “They could care less about helping with anything.”

Champagne ended up getting a plow company to clear the snow.

Resident Tracy Champagne comes out of her house on Fifth Street East in Cornwall, Ont. on Monday, Feb. 13, 2017 to speak with her snowplow driver, Dan Brunet. Champagne is upset the city dismissed her when she asked for help after a large snow pile was dumped in her driveway during snow clearing operations. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

But the city’s response will be of little consolation to Champagne.

John St. Marseille, Cornwall’s general manager of infrastructure, said the city follows a “consistent approach. We’re there to clean the roads and we don’t do individual driveways.”

St. Marseille said this complaint is not uncommon and is just “one of many types of complaints” they receive through the winter.

“There were other individuals that spoke to this lady as well from the municipality to explain what the situation was. Unfortunately, that’s the way the situation is with respect to us maintaining road clearing operations and the driveways become filled with snow. That’s just a side effect of that work.”

With a city front-line worker identification policy in place, Marseille said he will follow up on claims the city foreman wouldn’t identify himself to Champagne.

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