How is VDOT spending your tax dollars on the anticipated snow storm?

Paying for the storm
Posted at 11:28 AM, Jan 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-20 23:27:05-05

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - News 3 Investigates requested the latest information on how the Virginia Department of Transportation is using your money to prepare for and clean up after the storm.

The agency said they have more than 10,800 VDOT and contract vehicles available for snow and ice-control activities statewide.

They said they have more than 706,000 tons of salt, sand and treated abrasives, and more than 2.4 million gallons of brine and liquid calcium chloride in stock for snow and ice removal.

There are also more than 2,500 crewmembers available for snow-removal operations statewide.

VDOT has a $211 million budget for 2022 for the nine districts across Virginia, and they say it would cost $11 million per day to cover the statewide snowstorm.

To date, the Hampton Roads district has $1.5 million of our snow budget on all our preparations, materials and the first few events. Although the cost of this event will depend on exactly how much snow we receive, it could cost $2.5 million-$3 million.

VODT said the statewide snow budget has contingencies and reserves should the Commonwealth have a heavy winter, and there are processes in place to adjust budgets should those reserves be completely expended. They said VDOT will always spend what is needed to maintain the roadways in as safe a condition as possible, regardless of initial budget.

They said when they have extended snow events, other work is reduced during those events, and therefore expenditures are reduced just by crews working snow.

They said if additional funds are needed to cover snow costs, budgets and spend plans are reviewed and lower priority maintenance is delayed or deferred to cover shortfalls.

Related: Hampton Roads first responders preparing for expected snow later this week

They said at no time will essential maintenance be cut, which could create unsafe conditions.

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