Recent Snow and Ice Storms Prove Costly for Cities, Counties

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COLUMBIA - Boone County Public Works employees will work their 21st all-night shifts Thursday night since winter storms hit Columbia this month. That's a lot of worker hours that cost counties and cities money.

Maintenance Operations Manager Chett Dunn said Boone county spent $120,000 on equipment, labor, and snow removal materials this past week. Due to the salt shortage from the Kansas salt mine Boone County gets its salt from, the county is not relying on that salt to take care of road and sidewalk conditions. The county only purchased $6,000 of chemical care, less than Jefferson City's $38,000.

Jefferson City's Public Works Director Britt Smith said the city spent a total of $150,000 on the snow and ice storm combined. That amount includes labor, equipment, and chemical care.

Fulton estimates the past snow storm cost the city more than $70,000 for labor and materials. Columbia Public Works is not sure how much the city spent on snow removal efforts yet, but will have those numbers Monday.

Dunn said Boone County is focusing on resident complaints now, mainly consisting of large snow-mounds in cul-de-sacs and intersections. The problems arise because there is no place to put the snow. Employees are also working to widen paths on already cleared roads.