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City has spent $500,000 fighting snow

City has spent $500,000 fighting snow

February 21st, 2014 in News

In this Feb. 5, 2014, file photo, Jefferson City snowplow driver Brandon Stegeman follows another plow as they work in teams to clear city streets.

Photo by Kris Hilgedick

Jefferson City officials are hopeful winter is winding down, as the city has already spent more than $500,000 on snow-fighting efforts, more than the past two years combined.

At the Public Works and Planning Committee meeting Thursday, Operations Division Director Britt Smith said the city has seen 11 snow events this year, one of the highest numbers since he's been tracking snow expenses. Smith said the city, as of Feb. 17, has spent more than $508,000 on snow removal and fighting efforts this year, taking in combined costs of chemicals, equipment and manpower.

That total is more than the city spent in 2013 and 2012 combined. The two years had a total of 13 snow events and a combined cost of just more than $428,000 in snow removal and fighting.

Because the City Council authorized the purchase of additional materials last month, Smith said the department has 1,700 tons of salt, which would accommodate four more snow events.

"Our stocks are at 50 percent, which is pretty close to where we started the year," Smith said. "I'm always nervous about our stocks ... we figure we have enough for four events."

Smith noted he has never seen four snow events hit the city between February and the end of the year, though he took the precaution of knocking on wood after saying it aloud.