Big storm means big bucks
The Dickinson and Stark County road crews put in a combined total of about 620 overtime hours after a holiday storm last week.
At an average of about $30 an hour for overtime pay and benefits, the city road department racked up nearly $15,700 in overtime.
After working almost nonstop to clear the roads, both departments had Friday off for New Year's and don't intend to be out again until Monday.
"None of the staff had a Christmas break, except one who was on vacation, so yeah everybody's wore out," said Ed Krank, Dickinson Street Department assistant manager. "They're ready for some time off."
Al Heiser, Stark County road superintendent, said the county crew, which includes 16 employees, had about 100 hours of overtime last weekend.
Krank said he knows some city residents have been frustrated with snow on the roads. However, he said the road crew did a good job.
"Everything was passable, probably at the 36-hour range, but not cleared the full width of the streets," Krank said. "Along with all this, we're running a couple sanders most of the time while we're doing all the plowing, too."
Krank said the city has seven crew members.
"Just about any incident that you have you're going to have one person on vacation or out sick or something," Krank said. "In my opinion, we need more employees. More equipment wouldn't hurt either."
He expects the issue to be discussed with city commissioners.
Neither department expects anymore overtime -- at least until the next winter storm.
"Next week we will be widening roads," Krank said, adding that process began Thursday. "We still have some spots that are blocked completely, but we'll do that on straight time, very little overtime."
The roads blocked with snow have alternate access roads, so nobody is blocked in, Krank said.
"I'm guessing it will take us two weeks to get everything widened out and get areas cleaned up and hauled out ... if we don't get anymore snow," Krank said.
The Dickinson Police Department will begin ticketing vehicles stuck in the snow that haven't been moved since the storm after Monday, said Sgt. Dan Brown. Tickets will cost $15.
"It doesn't always happen, but what we try to do is also notify the owners that they need to move them," he said.