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Snow Costs Bloomington Thousands To Remove

Bloomington Mayor Mark Kruzan says because the city doesn't budget for major snowfalls, the cost of snow removal takes away from other city projects.

Snow plow

Photo: freefotouk

The recent snowfall cost the City of Bloomington $140,000 to remove.

Major snowfalls are not only an inconvenience, but also a major cost to the city — one for which mayor Mark Kruzan says Bloomington doesn’t have a budget.

“I remember when I was excited as a kid about snow,” Kruzan says. “Now all I see are dollar signs falling from the sky.”

With no specific budget line for snow removal, Kruzan says big storms take funds away from other important projects — like repaving city streets — to pay for cleanup costs.

The snowfall earlier this month required 450 tons of salt, fuel for 23 snow removal trucks, and 31 hours of employee work and overtime. Total cost to the city: $140,000.

“Materials, fuels, time, overtime — you know it’s of significant cost to the city,” Kruzan says.

Most snow removal truck drivers live out of county, so the city provides hotel rooms and food to ensure they get enough rest to safely operate snow removal equipment.

Taylor Killough

Taylor Killough is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and has studied anthropology and digital journalism. She has professional experience in education and communications and is excited to be a part of the award-winning team at WFIU/WTIU.

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  • Monica Foote

    It drives me crazy that the city doesn’t plan for snow. There is major snow that requires plowing at least once every year! You’d think people wouldn’t be so surprised about it anymore. Maybe they can raise the money to fund the plows by actually enforcing the fine for failure to shovel one’s sidewalks.

  • Dan Watt

    I have a fabulous idea. Use your parking meter money. It would have paid for the expense entirely. And please, how do you not have a budget for it? You’re officially the laughingstock of the Midwest. Get out.

  • TP

    This does not sound like a news story to me. It sounds like a statement from the mayor with no background or additional information. No budget!? That’s stupid. Of course there is a budget it just doesn’t happen to include a specific line item for “snow removal”. Why? It may be for any number of reasons but for one, because the cost varies so much from year to year it would not make sense to specify a particular dollar ammount for snow removal just to have to transfer funds every year between “snow removal” and other road maintenance, which is what this is. So we have a “maintenance” budget and OF COURSE if we spend more for snow removal then some other maintenance may have to be trimmed. Move along folks, no story here.

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