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October 28, 2017 12:45 am

2015 Snow Removal Costs In the Red

Thursday, January 14, 2016 @ 3:59 AM

Prince George, B.C.-  The numbers won’t be final  until the end of January,  but  the cost to  clear the snow from Prince George’s roadways  for  all of last year,  will be  about  half a million dollars over budget.The budget for snow  removal for 2015  was 6.3 million, and as of  December 2nd,   there was a little over a million dollars left in that  fund.

But the significant  snow event in  late  December  ate up that balance  and more,   as  crews worked on weekends and holidays  to clear the streets.

As of yesterday,  the  2015 Snow Removal  fund  was in the red  by about $100 thousand dollars, but  it’s estimated there are  about  $400 thousand dollars worth of invoices  yet to be received.

If  the estimates are correct,  then  the cost of  removing snow from  P.G. Streets from January 1st of 2015  to December 31st,  will be $6.8 million.   Interesting to note that Director of Finance , Chris Dalio,  had  predicted in October  that  snow removal costs  for 2015 would be about $6.9 million,  he was  very close.

This is the fifth  straight year that  snow removal expenses  have exceeded the  budget:


Year Budget Actual Cost
2011 $5.042 million $6.74 million
2012 $5.042 million $5.3 million
2013 $5.042 million $5.9 million
2014 $5.8 million $6.5 million
2015 $6.3 million $6.8 million (estimated)

When the  costs go over budget, the  difference is  paid for through  General Operating funds.

The snow levy is being  increased  by $700 thousand  dollars for 2016, in order to have $7 million  dollars ready to cover snow removal costs.  Any money not used in 2016  would be  used to  build up a snow removal  reserve  to cover cost over runs  in  future years.  The snow levy is also  to be boosted by a further $150 thousand dollars in each of the next two years.



Strange….and hardly any snow in comparison to previous years.

In setting a budget, don’t you look at past years’ expenses to formulate a new one?
And don’t you at least budget as much for a new year when you have a couple of years that exceeded the former amount?
Just wondering, that’s all.

the first 3 months of 2015 snow crews were fairly busy with several snow falls and while November and December were relatively quiet when the snow fell crews were busy 24/7 unfortunately when the snow fell it was around the Christmas stats and that adds up in a hurry as was stated in the above news release

There seems to me to be a lack of efficiencies in their snow removal system. My street, for example, was plowed 3 times after the Christmas snowfall even though there was no snow after the first pass.

Still seems odd to me that the downtown is a priority but one of the main feeder routes (5th Ave.) is not.

My street was cleared extremely well. After the budget increased, we would have crews out 5 times a day sometimes to clear and sand for the inch or 2 we’d get. At the slightest hint of icing, they’d come back a couple more times to sand.

I don’t understand why they don’t watch the weather when looking to plow the roads. They came down our road the day only day we had a real dump of snow , and had to come back the next week to clear it up again. If they waited the snow fallout, they could have just did the entire area one time.

We have only had one significant snowfall, the grader has been out twice this year… so the budget only allows for 2 snowfalls before going over? Sounds pretty pathetic.

We have only had one significant snowfall, the grader has been out twice this year… so the budget only allows for 2 snowfalls before going over? Sounds pretty pathetic.


The year started in January 2015.

They were good on my road, plowed it only 3 times this winter so far. At one point it was getting a little tough on small cars but they made it. It’s winter, that’s to be expected. Other side of town though my buddy was complaining they were plowing even when there wasn’t anything to plow, figured they were going to have to resurface his road if they kept it up. Seems like there were a few glitches in planning.

I think Edmonton and Nova Scotia have the GPS units in their plows that you can look up online and see which streets have been plowed and where they are going to plow next so that you can plan your route, stay out of their way and make sure you’ve moved your vehicle off the street.

Same song and dance every year. All that tells me is who ever is making up the budget is incompetent. Time to look for a new job.

Ya, if this I competence continues I may have to buy snow tires, slow down driving and leave early !

City talks tough on what they are going to do to people who park on roadways while snow removal is going on… well so far this year it is all hot air…. not one vehicle towed in my area , not one ticket written., vehicles interfering in the quick efficient snow removal.
Where are bylaws officers? in their office drinking coffee, reading the news paper, maybe writing up a report about the littering ticket they gave the 90 year old lady who’s wheel chair broke down on the sidewalk?

so city hall, in my opinion you are bullies and cowards….

if they started writing tickets for those illegally parked they probably could top up the snow removal budget with the fines and be ahead of the game.

but the P.T.S. the bylaws officers would have to endure would be horrendous I guess.

I don’t understand why they even set a budget for snow removal. Every year is different. Maybe just go with an 8 million dollar budget just in case. And every year could be a money saving year.

A lot of city residential streets saw graders plowing where there was nothing to plow on more than one occasion during 2015.

bcracer, bylaws officers get to pick and choose the bylaws they want to enforce.

If we are already over budget for the little snow fall we have gotten in our beautiful winter city , I would think this would give could cause for Mayor and council to revisit the high cost of our public workers and the great benefits and wages they earn . Perhaps if they fell into more the area of what the private sector can afford then the costs of running the city and snow removal would be more in line. Just a thought

I would think this would give could cause for Mayor and council to revisit the high cost of our public workers and the great benefits and wages they earn .


Now that’s funny! If it wasn’t for CUPE telling their members who to vote for this council would most certainly look different. Hall would be back at his cushy government job and Jillian would be doing whatever the heck it was she used to do. (Ride her bike around and complain about parked cars? – do people get paid for that?)

Axman. You realize that you have absolutely no factual data to back up your statements.

Insofar as the snow clearing is going, This year has been much better than many years in the past. It certainly seems they are better organized, and get the job done in record time.

I am hopeful that they will be taking a hard look at maintaining a higher level of service with less dollars. This can be done if we have the right manager in place, and the political will to get things done.

People in Prince George have high expectations of this Mayor and Council, and I for one will give them some slack, at least until the end of March next year. Then we should be able to get a better evaluation.

One thing is certain. Under Mayor Green, and some of the Managers at that time snow removal was a disaster. **Remember?**

I for one, am very pleased with snow removal this year and last, a serious step up from the last Mayor and council.

“There seems to me to be a lack of efficiencies…” Please!! Say it isn’t so!

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