Northwest Ohio county faces snow plow cuts after costly winter - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Northwest Ohio county faces snow plow cuts after costly winter

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HANCOCK COUNTY, OH (Toledo News Now) -

The long winter has hurt the budgets of local governments and residents could soon see the consequences.

Drivers in Hancock County might want to cross their fingers that they don't see more huge piles of snow, because the county engineer has made a decision to cut back, so they can get through the rest of the winter.

On a dry, sunny Monday, Hancock County plow trucks sat silent. It could be a similar scene at the county garage during certain hours the next time it snows. County Engineer Chris Long says he is restricting the hours plow drivers will be on the roads. 
   
While they normally clear Hancock County's streets from 4 a.m. until at least 7 p.m., during the next snowstorm they won't be out until 6 a.m. and will be off the job by 6 p.m.

County resident Jensen Clark doesn't like the cutbacks.

"There are all kinds of emergency workers out there. Without these roads plowed, they can't get around. They can't get these people what they need," said Clark.

The county engineer explained why these reduced hours are needed:

-In 2013, Hancock County had 585 overtime hours for plow drivers. This winter, plow drivers clocked 3,850.

-In 2013, overtime cost the county $19,600. This winter, overtime cost $96,800. 
 
Marcie Moon says the cutbacks make sense.

"That's a lot of money. We've had a lot of snow. We've had a lot of snow. There is probably not anything they can do to stop that. And if we're going to have to put the money into repairing the streets, we've got to cut the budget," she said.
 
The county engineer says if there is a big snowstorm before 6 a.m. or after 6 p.m. They will send out the plows.

"Hopefully, we won't get any more snow and then we don't have to worry about it!" said Moon.

Find a collection of tips for winter driving, saving on heating costs, protecting your home and more, in our Arctic Blast section.

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