Do other communities hold property owners financially responsible for the maintenance and repair of sidewalks?

Yes, most communities in California address sidewalk maintenance and repairs in accordance with California Streets and Highways Code Section 5610 (“Section 5610”), which places the burden of sidewalk maintenance on the adjacent property owner (see FAQ above). Many jurisdictions have also adopted ordinances which codify this responsibility into their municipal code. Some jurisdictions also provide, as allowed by California courts, that the adjacent property owner may be liable for injuries incurred by sidewalk users as a result of a failure to maintain and repair the sidewalk. The following table shows how other northbay jurisdictions handle sidewalk repair and liability:

Jurisdiction Responsibility to Repair Liability for Injuries 
Novato Ordinance Property owners (15-2.46) Ordinance: Property owners (15-2/46) 
County of Marin States & Highway Code 5610: Property owners No stated policy 
Belvedere Ordinance: Property owners (13.24.015) Ordinance: Property owners (13.24.017) 
Tiburon Ordinance: Property owners (24-02) Ordinance: Property owners (24-02) 
Corte Madera Ordinance: Property owners (12.56.010) Ordinance: Property owners (12.56.010) 
Sausalito Ordinance: Property owners (17.36.020) Ordinance: Property owners (17.36.030) 
Larkspur Ordinance: Property owners (9.55.030) Ordinance: Property owners (9.55.030) 
Ross Ordinance: Property owners (12.20.010) Ordinance: Property owners (12.20.040) 
Petaluma Ordinance: Property owners (13.10.010) Ordinance: Property owners (13.10.030) 
Napa States & Highway Code 5610: Property owners No stated policy 
Sonoma (City) Ordinance: Property owners (12.12.10) Only penalty for violation (12.12.160) 
Rohnert Park Ordinance: Property owners and renters (1.24.030) No stated policy 
Santa Rosa Ordinance: Property owners (13-32.020) Ordinance: Property owners (13-32.020) 
St. Helena Ordinance: Property owners (12.08.010) Ordinance: Property owners + City in defined area (12.08.025) 

 

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