In anticipation of an active winter season, the City of Hazelwood purchased 2,250 tons of salt at a rate of $62 a ton through a co-op program with other municipalities. Plans are to mix sand with the salt to make the supply last longer and to save the City some money.
This is just one of many cost-cutting measures implemented by the City of Hazelwood as part of a series of budget and service reductions, totaling $727,743, to cut the City’s $1.42 million dollar deficit in half. These budget cuts had to be made since local voters did not pass both tax referendum proposals, Props S and U, which were needed to establish an on-going revenue stream to help offset the deficit.
“During the campaign prior to August 5th, we warned residents that if one or both tax referendum proposals failed this would force some deep cuts to be made to the City’s vital services. There’s no way that significant cuts can be made without damaging the quality of our municipal services,” said Hazelwood City Manager Matthew Zimmerman.
“Up until now, we’ve attempted to make these cuts as painless as possible. But changes had to be made to the City’s snow removal practices this winter in order to keep expenditures under control,” Zimmerman added.
One new change is the increased usage of brine on local streets. Last year was the first time Hazelwood’s snow plow drivers applied salt brine on area roadways. It did an effective job of not letting the snow and ice adhere to the surface which made it easier to remove the debris. The City of Hazelwood plans to pre-treat all City streets with a brine solution this year. A new 2,000-gallon storage tank and a new 730-gallon brine delivery truck have been purchased for this purpose.
The list of designated emergency snow routes has been expanded this year to enhance public safety based on the road design. Approximately 56% of the streets in Hazelwood are now emergency snow routes. These roadways will be kept clear for emergency vehicle usage. The City will only plow/salt designated snow routes if a storm produces 3-inches or less of precipitation. (Click here to view and download the expanded list of 2014 Emergency Snow Routes)
In the event of a 4-inch or greater snow storm or a significant icing event, the City will plow/salt ALL City streets. The amount of snow plowing for each winter storm will be determined on a case-by-case basis. For instance, if the Hazelwood area is blanketed with 3″ of snow or less and the temperatures are moderate, only the emergency snow routes will be cleared. In situations involving an ice storm or freezing, sub-zero temperatures, all the City streets will be plowed/salted.