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Snow removal budgets running out with end of year storms

Price of plowing
Posted at 7:30 PM, Dec 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-16 21:30:27-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — The latest snowstorm in Southern Colorado is the 28th of 2019 resulting in a call-out for Colorado Springs plow crews. "Normally we're around anywhere from 16 to 20 events,” said Colorado Springs, Public Works Operations Manage, Jack Ladley. All the work had drained the budget with two weeks left to go in the year.

Some years there is a lot of snow while others bring drought conditions. Streets managers estimate budgets based on averages from typical years. It means dollars are short in 2019. "You look at a snow season that from January to January, has 28 snow events,” said Ladley, “We weren't quite budgeted for that number of snow events. So we're probably sitting at about $100 thousand over our budget." When snowstorms outpace the budget, crews do not have the option of scaling back because dollars are short.

The solution is making up for the money by scaling back other jobs. "Anytime I look at $100thousand it's significant, but we are able to cover those costs and not have to go and ask council or the mayor for additional dollars." It would also help if future storms hold of until the new year.