Winter blasts proving to be costly for the city of Jonesboro

By Lauren Payne - bio | email feedback

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT)  This winter wonderland is certainly no fairy tale for the city of Jonesboro.

"Your major expense would be your street department number one, followed by your sanitation department," said Jonesboro Mayor, Harold Perrin.

The cost to battle almost back to back snow storms is adding up.  Perrin estimates last month's blast from ole man winter cost the city nearly 15 thousand dollars.

"Just in overtime, materials, and things of that nature," said Perrin.

Perrin says the city budgeted 50-thousand dollars in overtime for the street department for the entire year.  He says the snow storm at the end of January took 20 percent or roughly ten thousand dollars of that budget.

"The sanitation department , we're just a little under 10 percent of our overtime that we've already expensed--just in January through today (Monday)," said Perrin.

Work to battle what ole man winter leaves behind continues.

"We have them working 12 hour shifts, we have a day crew and a night crew," said street superintendent for Jonesboro, Floyd Lemm.

From preventative maintenance like changing blades to filling trucks with sand--the goal is to have the equipment ready to roll at a moment's notice.

Nine sand and plow trucks and three chemical trucks following them doing the bridge work," said Lemm.

Perrin says it's no surprise that snow piling up will affect the city's bottom dollar. He says Jonesboro citizens are his top concern, adding you can't put a price on safety.

"We'll have to make that up in the budget and if it doesn't, then we'll have to go back to the council and amend the budget," said Perrin.

©2010 KAIT

 all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.