Cost of snow plowing raises concern over accountability of tax dollars

We’ve said this before, but looking at the amount of money the city paid for snow plowing and street salting, Hamtramck needs to review this service.
Last week we published the last batch bills for the winter season, which amounted to over $115,000 for the month of April.
That was for clearing and salting about a dozen streets and a couple of parking lots. In total, the city spent nearly $600,000 for this service since last November.
While the money used to pay for this comes from a state grant to fix and maintain roads, that’s hardly comforting. Instead of being spent on actually fixing streets, this was money drained out.
And yes, the city had to clear the snow, but that much money for a mere 12 streets or so?
We’re no experts when it comes to snow plowing, but we have also pointed out that the downriver community of Woodhaven did it for far less, and had more streets cleared.
Complicating Hamtramck’s issue is the nagging question of a conflict of interest. The city appointee who is tasked with supervising the work of the company that performs snow plowing, Platinum Landscaping, is a former employee of that company.
Hamtramck needs an objective review of this season’s snow plowing service. These are taxpayers’ dollars we are talking about, and they deserve an assurance of accountability.
It also raises the question of whether privatizing city services is really paying off in savings. But that’s another issue for another day.

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