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Resident irked at shoveling fine

Proposes work program for manual labor

The house at 11 Taft St., owned by Normand Plouffe, 88, who was fined $25 last week for not shoveling his sidewalk after the most recent snowstorm. Plouffe feels that he should have at least been issued a warning due to his ailing health and being a loyal resident. Adam T. Silva. (click for larger version)
January 18, 2011
SOUTHBRIDGE — Despite living in Southbridge his entire life, 88-year-old Normand Plouffe feels shortchanged.

On Thursday, Jan. 13, the day after the most recent snowstorm that dumped nearly two feet of snow on the area, Plouffe, who lives at 11 Taft St., was fined $25 for not shoveling the sidewalk in front of his house.

In a letter written by Plouffe, copied to the Southbridge Evening News, he said after 64 years of being a good taxpayer and always following town policies, he feels that the town should have at least given him a warning.

"I'm not supposed to do any heavy lifting or anything physical like that," said Plouffe. "I don't walk on the street by myself and I don't even bend down to tie my own shoes. I can't find anybody to shovel. My neighbors help when they can, but they have their driveways to shovel first."

Southbridge's bylaws state that homeowners have seven hours after a storm to clear the sidewalks in front of their homes.

For more on this story, and the letter that sparked it, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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