Goshen trying to find ways to save money clearing roads

GOSHEN, Ind. -- A winter storm set to hit Michiana Tuesday evening is expected to bring several inches of snow with it. The extreme weather is hurting snow removal budgets and is forcing crews to do things differently.

The Goshen Street Department is experimenting with different salt and sand mixtures trying to save money. Things have gotten so busy this winter, the street commissioner himself is out plowing…

"The quickest and easiest way for me to explain it to you is the guys are already at 100 hours of overtime for the year already. They only had 100 hours for the whole year in 2013," said Denny Long, Goshen Street Commissioner.

Long says this winter has been brutal, not just on equipment, but also on the budget.

Like many cities in Michiana, the city of Goshen is struggling to keep up with all the snowfall.

Long says this is the first winter in his five years as street commissioner that he will need to ask for more funds.

"Safety is our number one concern - for everyone," said Long.

Just 16 people are in charge of keeping hundreds of miles of Goshen roads clear.

Funds are so low, crews are experimenting with different types of materials to find the most cost efficient and safest mixture of salt, sand and anti-freezing liquid.

"The issue when it gets below zero is you really don't want to melt it, because it's instantly going to refreeze and be worse. So you're trying to play all those factors into what material you're putting down and how much material you're putting down," said Long.

The street department will continue to plow like they have because there's only so much cost savings possible, but sooner or later, cities will have to make up those budget shortfalls.


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