Mayor Art Ward is pushing to lower the cost of plowing snow in Bristol.
He's working with officials from public works, the park department and the schools to try to change the system currently in use so that fewer private plows are needed.
Ward said, for example, that it may make sense to use the park plows on city streets for some storms to help clear them for morning commuters and then shift the focus onto park property, perhaps with help from public works plows.
The same logic would apply to snow plow equipment used by the schools, the mayor said.
By figuring out what plows are available in each department and then working out the most efficient way to use them, Ward said, the city ought to be able to use fewer private contractors to fill the gap.
Since private plow operators are going to need more money this year to pay for fuel, Ward said, reducing use is the key to keeping snow removal costs from soaring out of control.
Comptroller Glenn Klocko said the last couple of winters have been relatively easy on city finances "so we're due."
Ward said that snow plowing is merely the first of many areas he's looking at in the hope of reducing duplication of services and cutting costs for taxpayers.
The mayor is even talking to the leaders of neighboring towns about looking for potential savings by checking into providing some services on a regional basis.
So far, there are no solid changes slated, but the effort could lead to less spending at City Hall.
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