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Storm clean up to cost over $250k in Melrose

Posted by Jarret Bencks  February 13, 2013 01:56 PM

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The clean up from the snowstorm Nemo will cost Melrose $250,000 to $300,000, but the city remains under its snow removal budget for the year, Mayor Rob Dolan said Wednesday.

Massachusetts communities are allowed to carry over snow removal budget deficits, and many mayors admittedly under budget the line item, but Dolan said he's slowly raised it each year he's been in office.

The snow removal budget for fiscal 2013, from July 1, 2012 to June 31, 2013, is $500,000 in Melrose.

"When you carry it over, it just pushes your problem to next year," he said. "I hope to start my next fiscal year with a nice clean slate."

The city will have less than $100,000 left in its snow removal account after all the bills are paid for the weekend storm, Dolan said.

At the storm's peak Friday and Saturday, 75 trucks were on Melrose streets, Dolan said. Crews were sent to city business districts last night to clear away snow banks, and a "snow strike force" of six to eight city workers has been sent out to clear away intersections to improve visibility and pedestrian access, Dolan said.

The "strike force" is made up of former city trash haulers, Dolan said. The city privatized its trash pickup last year, but kept its workers to be used as landscapers, plow drivers, and snow laborers, Dolan said.

"It's been a great benefit for us," he said.

The city's snow dumping lot, behind Mount Hood Golf Course on Route 99 is full, but trucks continue to dump more snow on top of it, Dolan said.

"It's like a mountain over there," he said.

Jarret Bencks can be reached at bencks.globe@gmail.com. Follow him on twitter @JarretBencks.

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