This post originally appeared on Orphan Road.
Seattle is covered in broken, dangerous sidewalks. I always assumed our sidewalks were terrible for the same reason that our roads are terrible – because WA is too anti-tax to fund anything properly. But today I found out that homeowners and businesses are actually required to maintain their own sidewalks. Not just rake and shovel our sidewalks, but if there’s a sidewalk outside your house and it’s cracked or a section is raised more than 1/2″, you are required to repair that sidewalk. There’s even language that allows the city to fix it for you, then bill you and put a lien on your home until you pay.
So with the death of the $60 car tab, how do we fix Seattle’s sidewalks? Simply have city workers wander our sidewalks looking for any cracks, roots, or damage, and require the adjacent homeowner to fix it. It may not be a popular move, but it would certainly be effective. All without raising taxes.