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Expanded Roles for Brick Public Works Discussed As Budget Rises

Road crew, snowplowing services from Public Works is discussed

Patch File Photo: Daniel Nee
Patch File Photo: Daniel Nee
There’s good news and bad news in the township’s Public Works department: recycling is up, but so is the operating budget for 2014 as the amount of money allocated for salaries has risen.

Since the introduction of automated “robocans” for recycling pickup, participation in the township’s recycling program is up 12 percent, said Glenn Campbell, Public Works Director.

The increase in recycling has led to larger grants for the township, including a state tonnage grant that rose from $128,000 to $178,000, plus another $107,492 from the county and $90,816 from metal pickups.

But costs have also risen in the agency as the township council has indicated it is looking toward ways of becoming more efficient.

The overall budget for the department rose from $7,515,792 expended in 2013 to $8,168,205 budgeted in 2014. Salaries are up a total of $647,306, specifically, $537,848 in solid waste collection salaries, $35,588 in building and grounds salaries and $73,870 in vehicle maintenance salaries.

But township officials are exploring ways to save money overall, including restoring a road crew that could save money over outside contractors on road repairs and snow plowing.

Over the past winter, the township spent $1,090,000 on snow removal, about $700,000 of which was paid to outside contractors, said Council President Susan Lydecker.

Campbell said a township truck driver would likely be paid about $30 per hour for snow removal, while an outside contractor is generally paid about $190 per hour.

The costs the council will be tasked with analyzing are those of equipment. Campbell said a tandem truck ranges between $170,000 and $180,000 while a dump truck costs about $120,000.

Councilman James Fozman said adding more trucks to the township’s fleet could ultimate save taxpayers’ money.

“Basically, we can invest in ourselves and it can cut down the cost,” Fozman said.
Raptor April 20, 2014 at 08:32 AM
Hi Linda, funny you should say that about the wheelbarrows, because that 's pretty much what dump trucks are, mechanized wheelbarrows.
Raptor April 20, 2014 at 08:39 AM
Joe WB while we did have numerous storms, I think total snow fall was around 50", we really didn't get slammed w/ a huge storm that dumped over a foot, so it was fairly simple for crews to maintain the roads and highways, the worse part was how much salt all agencies were forced to rifle through. Here in my neighborhood, every time they salted it looked like a gravel road. IMO if the TWP was to invest in anything, it would be containers for brine solution.
Linda Maloney April 20, 2014 at 08:41 AM
LOL @Raptor Peace! Have a great holiday!
Mrgrumpass April 21, 2014 at 04:13 AM
I have two questions regarding PW, first how many homes are no longer needing servicing from BTPW, if fewer homes are being serviced than BTPW personal should be cut. Next why not train non emergency township personal to plow snow, the state does it why not the town?
Rock.n.Roll April 22, 2014 at 09:44 AM
Snow removal should not be an expensive ordeal. We do not have enough snow from year to year to warrant a lot more equipment. I think most of us would rather see our taxes cut and downsizing within the town for all entities, from police to simple town admin employees. The state is on the verge of bankruptcy (Detroit just went belly-up, and more towns are following because of all the ridiculous benefits and pensions being given in a very flawed system). You just cannot keep going to the well (average taxpayers) each time more money is needed. Towns need to budget the same way families do. WAKE UP FELLOW CITIZENS! Public employees at the higher end are cheating taxpayers. Multiple pensions for multiple jobs which in many cases are no show, or very little time and effort and skill, necessary, getting richly rewarded! Get rid of the corruption and cheating, and monies will be available for special needs and emergencies. There are many examples within our town of very poor management and waste. We need to cut back now.

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