Lack of winter leads to salt savings this year

PDT Sports Report

September 17, 2012


PDT Staff Writer

Municipalities across the area are experiencing potential savings in road salt purchases. The Village of New Boston does not anticipate purchasing any road salt this winter, leading to a potential savings of $20,000.

“We are not going to have to purchase any salt this year. We have about 75 tons on-site and 200 tons off-site. We are looking at a potential savings of about $20,000. If we get to keep the saving, it will go into the villages general fund,” said Steve Hamilton, village of New Boston Administrator. “Last year we did not have much of a winter and this winter could be horrible and we use 300 tons. If that is the case, we do have some money set aside in case we need to purchase some salt.”

According to Scioto County Engineer Craig Opperman, Scioto County received a total of only three inches of snow in 2012.

Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) officials announced on Monday a potential savings of $10 million by changing the way in which it gets salt contracts. According to released information, ODOT has asked salt companies make bids on a county-by-county basis. This year ODOT had salt companies to bid on providing salt to ODOT in addition to counties individually, as a result the saving could be $10 million.

ODOT expects to purchase 209,000 tons less salt this coming winter.

Scioto County has three outposts in which the salt is stored: Otway, South Webster and a shared space with the Ohio Department of Transportation in Wheelersburg. Opperman said that is in addition to the garage in Lucasville.

Opperman said the counties outposts are currently filled up with salt. He said on any given year the county will spend $100,000 a year on 1,500 tons of salt. If the county is able to see some savings, he said, it will be put towards other projects within the county engineering department.

Bill Beaumont, Portsmouth’s public service director, said “depending on the winter we will likely have to purchase some salt. We have a yearly contract for salt that’s put out to bid. Within the month I expect to put out bids for salt.”

He said the service departments salt box is currently 75 percent full of salt left over from last year.

Wayne Allen may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 208, or wallen@heartlandpublications.com.