Report: Improved snow and ice removal comes with a hefty price tag
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -
After several complaints from citizens about
poor snow and ice removal on February 12, Cincinnati City Council asked Public Services to put
together a report detailing issues related to the snow and ice removal
What they found were several solutions that come with pretty hefty
"The previous two
winters were very light so we are pretty much paying for it this year I
think," says Larry Whitaker, Assistant to the Director for Cincinnati Public
Whitaker says Cincinnati Public Services has been going
non-stop for the last nine weeks trying to keep up with an unrelenting winter.
"This year we had all
of our trucks running pretty much non-stop so when the trucks start to go down,
you really feel the impact. When they are really needed is when you feel it the
most," says Whitaker.
is why - at the city's request - Public Services put together a report
detailing how they could rebuild much of the Winter Operations.
says due to budget cuts over the last few years, Public Services did not have
the funds to replace some of their outdated fleet. As a result, 60 percent of their
fleet has exceeded their life cycle.
All together, the cost of repairing their fleet and replacing worn out equipment
came to more than $8.8 million.
"It all boils down to
money," says Cincinnati City Councilman
the city doesn't have.
"I don't believe that
it is realistic to expect that the city can pony up $8.8 million to one
department. I don't believe that is going to happen," says Young.
Young says the city can't pay for all their needs, he certainly supports
finding extra resources for public services.
"They are constrained
by money as are we all and so they did what they could with within the budget
they had. I believe they have done a masterful job. Could somebody argue that
they could do better? Of course. They just need more resources," says Young.
Young says they also have to keep in mind how rare this
winter has been. They don't want to spend millions of dollars of equipment that
they many not need during more average winter months.
Vice Mayor David Mann says while they can't pay that 8.8
million all at once, he would like to see the city put a plan in place to give
public services what they need over the next five years.
Whitaker says while they would love to get everything
they asked for, at this point any help is better than none at all.