By Jeff Gallatin
Mayor Debbie Sutherland said service Director Scott Thomas’ latest move to obtain 100 tons of additional road salt reinforces her belief that she made the right deal when she brought him to Bay Village from North Olmsted.
Thomas obtained the additional salt last week from the Ohio Department of Transportation, as Bay Village and many other area cities work to cope with salt shortages because of supply and delivery problems with primary supplier Morton. Thomas was able to get the salt with the assistance of state Sen. Tom Patton’s office, which put him in touch with ODOT.
Sutherland said the deal gives Bay Village some needed help after the last major storm came through northern Ohio last week. Bay officials had been conserving salt and said they would be focusing on keeping the main roadways salted, with side streets not getting as much.
“We had about 125 tons of salt, but we went through about of 100 of that after the latest round of bad weather,” she said. “So, basically we got back up to where we were before. This will allow us to work on some intersections and be prepared for some additional bad weather. We should be able to get through one more major storm with what we’ve got right now. After that, I don’t know, but we haven’t hit that yet at this point.”
Sutherland said the city had already sent dump trucks to ODOT supply areas and brought back the salt.
“The way this winter’s been, we wanted it available to us as quickly as possible,” she said.
Thomas said he contacted Patton’s office because the senator represents the Westshore area.
“We’re constituents and needed some assistance, so they were extremely helpful and they put us in touch with ODOT,” he said. “They said they would do what they could, and we got the 100 tons that way. Basically, they made it an in-kind deal, where we would give them the 100 tons back when we got it and could spare it.”
Even though Morton has indicated to various public entities throughout Ohio that it will be delivering more salt, Thomas said this isn’t the time to take chances.
“Based on the tough winter and what’s gone on so far, we didn’t have any assurance that we’d have what we need, so we worked out this arrangement with ODOT,” he said. “We will be working on the intersections. The crews have been doing a great job, and this will help.”