Heavy, early winter downfall takes big bite out of Colchester's snow removal budget

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TRURO - What a difference a year makes when it comes to snow removal budgets - at least between last winter and this one.

Glen Scott, a maintenance shop mechanic with Colchester County, is seen conducting engine repairs to one of the municipality's sidewalk plows. The equipment has been seeing lots of action so far this winter with the continuous snowfalls the region has received.

The early and persistent snowfall from this winter has so far eaten up about 40 per cent of Colchester County's snow removal budget of approximately $250,000 for roads and sidewalks.

"It is a huge difference (from last year)," said Michelle Newel, the municipality's director of public works. "There is kind of a sense (from staff) that we are double where we would have been at this point last year."

Up to the end of January 2013, the county had spent just shy of $41,000 for snow removal. So far this year, however, that figure is closer to $100,000.

"And last year we didn't really go into winter operations shift mode until January, whereas this year we were into that the beginning of December or so," Newell said. "Let's hope for a mild, remaining winter."

Up to the end of February 2012, the county spent $54,593 (before overtime costs) on snow removal.

And this winter has been even harder on the Town of Truro, which has already consumed about half of its $550,000 snow removal budget.

hsullivan@trurodaily.com

Twitter: @tdnharry

Geographic location: Colchester County

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  • Jonathan
    January 24, 2014 - 02:04

    So end of Feb 2012 in Truro there was 141 cm of snow fall in total that cost close to $55k By Jan 10 of 2014 in Truro there was 72 cm of snow fall in total that cost close to $250k In one year with 1/2 the snow fall over the year before, spending on the same job has gone up by 500% and actually did HALF the snow removal over the past year?!?! Spending out of control. There is no excuse for this, but certainly deserves detailed open book explanation.