Snow Removal Budget Freezing Up

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The official start to winter is still five days away but the City of Grand Junction says money for snow removal is almost all gone.

Meanwhile the city says it only has enough salt and magnesium chloride for two more storms but says it has a backup plan.

City crews were in and out of the snow removal shed on Tuesday to keep their trucks filled with salt and magnesium chloride but the batch of magnesium chloride and salt won't last much longer.

Street Maintenance Supervisor Dave Van Wagoner says the city is trying to keep up.

"We have a bare pavement policy and we try to get ahead of the storms to where we can keep that pavement wet and keep things safe."

Van Wagoner says this year's budget is nearly spent for two reasons-- last year's winter brought record snowfall and dipped into this year's funds, another factor is skyrocketing salt prices.

"We're just gonna make sure we're stocked up as much as we can," Van Wagoner told 11 News on Tuesday.

He says safety on the roads is the number one priority so the city is making cuts elsewhere. He says the city has never run out of salt and magnesium chloride and doesn't plan to.

"Last winter probably would have tested us as far as material if we were going to run out and we stayed right on top of it."

If all else fails, he says the city can get back up supplies from Mesa County and CDOT.

City officials tell 11 News they just put in another order for salt and magnesium chloride and there's only a few more weeks until January when the city will get a new budget, which means new money for snow removal..

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