Late Snowfall Helps Cities Save

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It's the first day of winter and salt trucks were out combing the streets across mid-Michigan. However, crews say this has been somewhat of an unusual year.

"We've been enjoying the warm weather, making progress on roads in other ways. We are saving money on salt as well," said Scott House, superintendent of operations and maintenance for the City of Lansing.

House says they've saved about $55,000 in salt so far. Though winter is far from being over, he's hoping to have extra money for road repair during summer.

The Ingham County Road Department was also busy on Friday with 35 salt trucks on the road.

"We've had some savings between Thanskgiving and where we're at right now. We've saved about 23% on our winter maintenance budget to date," said Bill Conklin, managing director of the Ingham County Road Department.

Each year, Ingham County sets aside about $830,000 for special winter maintenance, which includes overtime and the cost of salt. Saving 23% means the deparmtent could have an extra $190,000 for road repair next summer.

"It's not going to enable us to rebuild any roads or to resurface multiple miles of roads but it will enable us to possibly chip seal a few extra miles and do a little extra of our maintenance paving around the county," Conklin said.

According to Conklin, $190,000 won't go a long way because of the decrease in funding for the department, but he's still hoping people will see some minor improvements.

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