City spends entire snow budget, attention turns to potholes

City spends entire snow budget, attention turns to potholes

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

The city of Chicago has already used its entire snow removal budget for the year - and then some.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports the city's already spent $25 million for snow removal. That's $4.5 million over budget.

Kelley Quinn is a spokeswoman for the city's Office of Budget and Management. She says the streets "will remain plowed and passable," adding "we will not let the city grind to a halt."

The city spent $20.5 million on snow removal efforts last year and had the same amount budgeted for 2014. But in 2013, only 20 inches of snow fell. This winter, more than 62 inches of snow has fall at O'Hare International Airport. About 23 inches of that has fallen since New Year's Eve.

Now that we seem to be done with the frigid temperatures and massive snowfalls, the worry turns to potholes.

The City of Chicago is doing the best they can to patch potholes, but State Rep. Lashawn Ford says that the state should be helping the city of Chicago's department of transportation.

"I think this has been unprecedented conditions this winter. I don't think we have seen this since about 35-years ago. So the city is strapped for cash and I think the state should step in," Ford said.

Ford said he's concerned about the road conditions and the danger it poses to drivers who swerve out of their lanes to avoid potholes.

"We have dangerous road conditions where people are dodging potholes which cause them to hit other cars in other lanes. We have to do something to make the road conditions safer. This is a perfect opportunity to create jobs here in Illinois. These are opportunities for all communities. We see potholes in every community across the state," Ford said.

He added that the road conditions have been especially difficult on the budgets of people in the 8th District. Ford said he gave one woman $50 to repair a tire on her vehicle after she stopped by his office and asked for help.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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