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Blizzard Of 2017 Cost Poughkeepsie $450K

A look at how deep the snowfall was from the blizzard that slammed Poughkeepsie and Dutchess earlier this month.
A look at how deep the snowfall was from the blizzard that slammed Poughkeepsie and Dutchess earlier this month. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman

POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. -- The City of Poughkeepsie spent an estimated $450,000 on snow operations during the Blizzard of 2017 that hammered the area beginning on Tuesday, March 14, according to City of Poughkeepsie Mayor Rob Rolison.

The powerful Nor'easter dumped as much as 2 feet of snow in parts of Poughkeepsie as it ripped through the area on gusty winds, causing major snow buildup across the city.

The $450,000 spent includes the payroll cost of more than 4,000 personnel hours between the Department of Public Works, the City Police Department, and Fire Department. The total cost estimate also includes equipment and repairs, salt, fuel and contractual labor, Rolison said.

“Cost overruns in our snow-removal budget must now be offset by savings in other budget lines. I have instructed our Commissioner of Finance to work with all Department Heads to identify areas where we may be able to tighten our belt through the remainder of the year," Rolison said.

Rolison said city crews worked around the clock for six days until Sunday, March 19, keeping snow emergency routes open, clearing streets and intersections city-wide and removing large snow banks from areas throughout the city, with special attention to school crossing intersections.

City officials made a request to Gov. Andrew Cuomo for assistance and as a result, the governor committed NYSDOT personnel, equipment, and additional assistance from the New York National Guard, which provided traffic control and safety for work crews.

Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro also offered the city assistance in and around the county campus and other areas of the city. In addition, the city contracted with three private companies to assist with snow removal.

“While this event placed a significant burden on us all, I see this as an example of government working at its best, of public-sector employees from three levels of government stepping up to get it done, and of what can be accomplished when we work together with coordination and efficiency,” Rolison said.

Rolison added that he wanted to thank all who helped for their efforts.

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