Nelson snow removal on budget

Nelson city crews clean up the aftermath of the big storm of December 18 and 19. The 2012 snowplowing effort is expected to come in on budget. - Nelson Star file photo
Nelson city crews clean up the aftermath of the big storm of December 18 and 19. The 2012 snowplowing effort is expected to come in on budget.
— image credit: Nelson Star file photo

While the final year-end figures aren’t in, it appears the City of Nelson was almost exactly on budget for snow removal in 2012.

Treasurer Colin McClure says he expects the total to come in very close to the $690,000 set aside, and maybe even a little under.

“We seem to be right in line with what we budgeted,” he says. “I was pleased with that in the sense we dropped $50,000 out of the budget trying to balance it last year. That’s always a risk, with the type of snow we can get.”

Previously the snow clearing fund was about $740,000. McClure said it was adjusted downward based on the average late autumn and early winter snowfalls of the previous five years.

The $690,000 is over the calendar year, including January and February 2012 as well as November and December. McClure says the city appeared headed for a surplus until the big storm of December 18 and 19 that had crews working flat out.

The snowplowing budget includes wages as well as materials and use of city trucks. It covers snow and ice removal from both roads and sidewalks.

By the time the 2013 budget is adopted in March, the city will already have an idea how much was spent clearing snow in the early months.

Meanwhile, Salmo allocated $80,500 for its 2012 snow removal season. At a glance, the village is under budget by $1,700, administrator Scott Sommerville said.

Due to its elevation, Salmo gets a fair amount of snow compared to its neighboring communities, he said.

A major snow event would be 7.5 cm or more, and triggers the automatic authorization of overtime on weekends for the crew, he explained.

“The new global ‘weirding’ is resulting in more frequent ‘rain-on-snow’ events,” said Sommerville. “And this is a challenge we deal with.”

— With files from Sheri Regnier, Trail Times

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