Western Mass. Cities Digging in to Snow Removal Budgets

Despite a recent lull, western Massachusetts has been hit with a handful of snow storms so far this winter. That means cities and towns have begun digging in to limited snow removal budgets, with weeks, or months, of winter weather still to come. 

Snow and ice have kept road crews busy in Springfield, and the city’s public works director Allan Chwalek says that’s chipped away at the $1.5 million dollar snow removal budget.

“We’ve expended roughly about three-quarters of the budget,” says Chwalek. “We’ve had ten events this winter where we’ve had to either spread [sand and salt] or go plowing.”

Chwalek says spending is slightly ahead of past winters, so the DPW decided to ask the city council for permission to go over budget if necessary. Other cities haven’t used up quite as much money. Pittsfield public works director Bruce Collingwood says his department has used less than a third of its $650,000 dollar snow budget. But he says he anticipates spending all of that money, and possibly more, by the end of the season.