It’s been a busy winter for snow and ice control in the City of Vernon.
In just over two months this year, 445-thousand dollars has been spent on keeping roads clear, with 22 snow related incidents.
Public works manager James Rice says they did get some complaints about the lack of downtown snow removal.
“Downtown snow removal is a very complex process. It involves a lot of city equipment and contract equipment . It has to occurr between the hurs of 11 pm and 7 am jut because it’s such a large train of equipment,” Rice told City council.
Each downtown snow removal costs 20-thousand dollars.
Council debated adding $80,000 to reserves to cover more of those, but put-off any decision until later this year.
Rice told council, they could set the snow threshold at 15 centimetres, about half the current figure
“This would increase the number of snow removals from the downtown area from two, to between two and six, at an estimated budget increase of up to $80,000.”
Rice says in his report to council, “Administration reminds Council that 2019 currently stands to be an exceptionally challenging budget cycle for a variety of reasons (due to) $530k (estimated) shortfall in revenues, $440k payroll tax, $350k increase in costs for transit.”
Rice says the City is often asked to clear the wind-rows left by the plow trucks from the ends of driveways.
He says providing that service would require extra equipment and manpower, costing an extra 300-thousand dollars a year.
Rice says the City has received 133 public complaints this year, after 181 in 2017, and 223 in 2016.