The City of Williams Lake could be enhancing their service when it comes to snow removal from sidewalks.
City staff was tasked with finding out the cost of having the city responsible for clearing all of the sidewalks in the city, after the city received a number of complaints this Winter.
“It looks like, if you add up the total between buying new equipment, staff time, and supplies, we’re looking at about a half a million dollars,” said Mayor Walt Cobb.
“If we increased the budget by that amount, that would be about a 5% increase in our budget.”
According to a report from Director of Municipal Services, Rob Warnock, the expected costs to enhance sidewalk clearing would be more than $230,000 annually, including:
- New sidewalk machine: $185,494 (one-time purchase).
- Two equipment operator 1’s: $103,792 x 2 = $207,584.
- $25,000 more in the budget for operating costs and supplies.
- Potential savings in administration of complaints and bylaw enforcement activities relate to snow clearing.
Warnock’s report also detailed four potential benefits of enhancing the service:
- The City would provide the same service to everyone in a timely manner.
- We could be confident all the sidewalks would be getting done (plowed and sanded).
- As time permits, there is also a possibility that the extra staff may also be able to take on a couple of the walking trails that at this time are not being done regularly but are frequently requested by residents.
- Lessened burden on bylaw enforcement resources to address uncleared sidewalks.
On Tuesday, city council voted to refer the item to a budget meeting for further discussion.
Other items discussed at last night’s meeting included the return of the Williams Lake Stampede, regional cost sharing of parks and trails, and asphalt rehabilitation on several city streets.