Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Aldermen give mixed reviews on snow removal

"There are cars getting stuck all over the place, and we need to do more," Ald. Billy Ocasio (26th) said. "I don't think that with all of the taxes we raised, and with the new budget that we passed -- you know, we should have accounted for this. ... In our neighborhoods, those neighborhoods that are poor, we're angry. We're not seeing [increased snowplowing]. Last night, I drove around for two hours looking for a salt truck."

Ocasio, who voted against the budget and has become an increasingly frequent critic of the Daley administration, said city officials gave him the runaround when he went to them with complaints. Ocasio noted that Daley recently split snow-removal responsibilities between Streets and Sanitation and Department of Transportation officials.

"Who's running the show here?" Ocasio said, citing a "lack of leadership."

But several other aldermen said the city did a much better job than it had during the last snowstorm a couple of weeks ago.

"The snow removal was 100 percent better than it was the last time," Ald. Howard Brookins (21st) said. "When I went out this morning, it was markedly better than it was on the past two snowstorms. I commend the [Streets and Sanitation] commissioner and the mayor. I guess they got the message that the residents were really upset with the slow response on the last two snow dates."

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