Salt storage, cost leave West Elizabeth officials looking for answers
With concerns about salt cost overages this past winter, West Elizabeth officials are looking at having the borough store its own salt next winter.
The borough currently obtains its salt through the neighboring borough of Elizabeth, which houses salt used in both communities. Elizabeth purchases salt through the South Hills Area Council of Governments.
At a regular council meeting Wednesday, some West Elizabeth officials said they were surprised to see that their borough had been charged as much as $81 per ton for some of the salt it used this winter.
Councilman Frank Magill said he was under the impression the borough was only paying $57.52 per ton of salt.
“They're blindsiding us on this,” said Magill, though council officials did review a letter from South Hills Area COG sent in January saying that rates on salt would go up for municipalities that exceeded estimated use levels.
The $81 per ton rate was charged to municipalities that used more than 40 percent of their salt allotment, which is estimated before winter begins.
Councilman Ray Armstrong said, “I think we ought to get our own salt pile,” adding there are places in the borough to store the material.
Elizabeth Mayor Ann Malady, who was at the West Elizabeth meeting, said she is agreeable to having an apportioned amount of the salt from South Hills Area COG delivered to West Elizabeth.
West Elizabeth Solicitor Matt Racunas said the issue for both boroughs is knowing when they are approaching threshold levels for increased salt costs related to usage.
West Elizabeth's total salt expense for the past winter was $7,807.47.
Eric Slagle is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1966.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.