WINNIPEG —; Winnipeg hasn’t seen its first snowfall, but residents are already dreading the idea of shoveling their back lanes.
The union representing the city’s municipal workers presented their own report saying they want to phase out private snow clearing, and that it would save taxpayers $3 million a year.
The public plowing works report includes comments from more than 400 Winnipeggers collected through the “snow plowing hotline” during spring of 2015.
“We’ve heard all sorts of horror stories from the public,” Mike Davidson, president of CUPE Local 500 said, “including damage to personal property and the quality of snow clearing.”
The union’s plan involves the city buying new equipment and hiring 150 new employees. In order to find the savings, CUPE said the city workers and equipment would have to be used year round.
City councillor Brian Mayes had problems with snow clearing by contractors in his ward back in 2013, but said this past winter the clearing improved. His biggest concern was the challenge of communicating with the contractors.
“For this winter, as long as I can have better contact with the contractors I think that will help a whole lot,” Mayes said. The city said they would take the report into consideration, but they were also quick to defend their own process. “We feel it would cost significantly to buy more equipment, to have more yards to store that equipment, to service that equipment,” CAO Doug McNeil said.
The city’s review of snow clearing last year is still not complete. It has been postponed twice.
The union representing the city’s municipal workers presented a report on snow clearing feedback on Friday. Talia Ricci/Global News
The union representing the city’s municipal workers presented a report on snow clearing feedback on Friday.
Talia Ricci/Global News