What is going on at the City’s Street department?
For the second time this year the street department did absolutely nothing when there was ice on city streets. What is the justification for not taking any action? Was it because it was Saturday and it was the employee’s day off? Was it because they had used up their 600 tons of allotted salt in this mild winter season? Was it because they did not know or ignored the weather forecast? Or was there another more sinister motive for the Street department’s inaction? For those who slept in and missed the icy city roads Saturday morning, the photo of the sunlight reflecting off the dark ice that covered the entire intersection of Wrigley Drive and Broad St. is just a single example of how dangerous some of the roads and intersections were at 8:30AM Saturday morning on April 9th, 2016 in downtown Lake Geneva.
The roads were not salted or sanded but were left to wait until later in the morning when Mother Nature’s sunlight could warm the road enough to melt the ice. The question is why was nothing done? Perhaps that question is best answered by asking the question “who benefitted most from not putting salt on the roads?”. The first answer is the county. The city of Lake Geneva pays for its allocation of salt whether or not it uses it. If the city does not use its salt allocation for the winter then the county keeps the salt (even though the city paid for it) and stores the salt until next year when the county resells the same salt back to the city, thus getting paid a second time for the same salt. The street department budget also benefits because no overtime pay for spreading salt is paid, thus making the street department look more efficient. Mr. Dan “Piggy Bank” Winkler said using 100% salt would reduce the total amount of salt that the city uses. By the street department not using any salt when it should have, it enables Winkler to have salt usage numbers to prove his point. Lake Geneva City Management could sleep undisturbed while those who had to go to work risked their lives on ice covered roads. The streets were so slippery that is was not safe for the city trucks to be on them, so to prevent them from being damaged they weren’t sent out. Pick a decent excuse. All of them were used to explain this incompetence and failure to help the citizenry.