The City of Belmond is ready for the first snow storm. That’s what the city council heard Monday night.

  “We have all but one snow fence up, and that will be done this week,” said Public Works Director Mark Dirks. “The plows are ready to go. We’ll be working on getting the leaves picked up out of the gutters this week.”

  “I tested our snow emergency system using text messages on Code Red,” said Police Chief Rick McDaniel. “There are now 350 people on the list. And anybody who isn’t on Code Red can sign up (on the county website”

  City Councilman Ron Allen asked about how snow emergencies will be declared.

  “That will be determined between me and Mark,” said McDaniel.

  “And when the forecast looks good for snow, we might declare it early so we don’t have to do it in the middle of the night,” said Dirks.

  Here is a rough outline of the snow parking ordinance in Belmond. Whenever a snow emergency is declared, all vehicles must be moved off the street until snow removal has occurred from curb to curb. Normally, it is illegal to park a vehicle in the front yard of a home. But this rule is temporarily suspended during a snow emergency. In the downtown area, snow parking bans begin at 2 a.m. and last until the street is cleared. Snow emergencies will be announced online and through Code Red.

  “The safest thing to do is just not park in the street if the weather forecast is for snow,” said City Attorney Gary Berkland. “That way you don’t have to worry about getting a parking ticket if it starts snowing in the middle of the night.”

  “It’s helpful if people just pay attention to the weather forecast,” said Dirks.