Pressure : 29.61 in
Dewpoint : 55.9 °
Wind : South
City of Hastings responds to snow removal concerns
More than 200 Hastings residents have sounded off on our Facebook page. They're demanding to know why the city hasn't done a better job with the roads.
Is it the budget? Or did workers not hit the streets quickly enough?
News 5 spoke with city council member Phil Odom he says the budget or talks about workers not hitting the streets early enough has nothing to do with it. But, rather the snow and below zero conditions played the biggest role in this year's street clean up.
Ice ruts, slippery roads and snow have Hastings residents up in arms. Some say the city hasn't done its job.
"It's not anything that we did or didn't do it's just that the weather the way the storm came in the amount of moisture that was in there the number of cars. It compacts that snow and in this case with the freeze coming right behind the wet snow that we had it simply caused ice to form on the streets," said Odom.
For the past twenty years city council member Odom admits the city's snow budget hasn't changed. But why?
"There's no need to. You never know how much it's going to snow," said Odom.
The city has a snow budget of approximately $100,000.
Odom says the city tries to use its funds resourcefully.
"We keep money contingencies for those years where we have heavy snow and if we use up that $100,000 we're then able to use that contingency monies to help with snow removal," said Odom.
The city wants to avoid dipping into those reserve funds for possible street repairs for the spring and summer months.
City Council member Odom says he doesn't think adding more money to the snow budget would be an efficient way to use the city's dollars, but, hypothetically speaking, if the city looked at raising taxes News 5 asked residents would they be willing to pay more.
"Slightly more. They don't need a huge increase, but they are on an old budget where the price of gas and the maintenance has gone up considerably," said Tom Abrams.
"We need more man power; I would pay extra tax for that," said Donna Wroblewski.
"I personally wouldn't. I don't think we really need it. I think the city does a pretty good job. This is our first snow storm and it was a big one," Donna Keller said.
Of the one hundred thousand dollars$100,000 at least $11,000 has already been spent in the budget.
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