Abington: Town already at least $60,000 over snow & ice budget

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Abington Finance Committee has unanimously approved deficit spending for snow and ice in this current fiscal year.

The Committee had a discussion with Town Manager Rick LaFond at their meeting Wednesday night.

LaFond said that before this past storm, the town was already $60,000 over the budget, which was set for $100,000 for FY14. He is unsure how far over budget they are currently.

LaFond pointed out the three main items that the budget covers. “[There's] money to pay personnel who are on staff for the town overtime, there’s funds to contract with private companies for plowing services, and there’s funds for road materials: sand, salt, etc.,” he said,” That’s 99% of the budget, those three items.”

LaFond added that the town has historically spent about $400,000 a year on snow and ice removal. He said the goal is to start moving the snow and ice budget up on an annual basis.

“Because…legally you can defray the costs into the next fiscal year, when it comes time to making budget cuts, saving services, saving jobs, saving teachers, saving police officers, etc., a lot of times that goal takes a back seat,” LaFond said, “At this early stage of the budget process, I would say it is a goal to start getting more of the costs into the correct fiscal year.”

The Board of Selectmen will vote on the deficit spending at their meeting on Monday night.

About Samantha Tracey

Samantha Tracey graduated from Salem State University in 2013 with a degree in Journalism. She has been reporting on local issues in a variety of towns: Bridgewater, Abington, Carver, Weymouth, East Bridgewater, Hanson, Halifax, etc. She says growing up on the South Shore has made it interesting now to be covering news in such familiar places.