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Wauwatosa running out of road salt

March 15, 2011

Wauwatosa has nearly used up its supply of road salt and the Public Works Department is asking for money to buy more.

A special Budget and Finance Committee will be held at 7:15 p.m. Tuesday to decide whether to use $51,000 from contingency funds to purchase an additional 1,000 tons of salt.

The city has already purchased and used 3,400 tons for more than 30 road-salting operations this winter. A few years ago, the city implemented a policy to reduce salt use on side streets, but there has been a large number of snowfalls.

The purchase contract allows Wauwatosa to buy another 1,000 tons that is being held in reserve, but it must be delivered by April, according to a memo from Bill Wehrley, interim public works director.

The additional salt would put the city in a good position for late-season storms or it could be saved for next winter, when road salt prices are expected to come in higher.

The expenditure would leave $176,000 in contingency.

The recommendation of the committee will go right to the Common Council for a final decision a 7:30 p.m. If approved, the salt could be delivered within days.

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