Fox added that employees worked a lot of overtime from Oct. 30, the day after the storm, through Nov. 10, when most of the cleanup was done. There was some additional overtime on Nov. 14, a normal agriculture pickup day, as many residents were getting rid of branches cleared from their property and sanitation trucks were on the road longer than normal. “We wanted to collect everything,” Fox said, “so they had to put in a few more hours.”
Some overtime was also necessary during the nor’easter on Nov. 7, when about eight inches of snow fell in Valley Stream. In total, employees put in about 3,600 hours of overtime in the weeks after the storm.
The rest of the storm-related costs were equipment purchases such as chainsaws, blades, ropes and caution tape. The village is still assessing damage to the streetlights. Fox said that replacing them could add another $10,000 to $15,000 to the final bill. A new street light costs $665, plus labor.
Mayor Ed Fare said he was expecting the storm costs to exceed a half-million dollars, so he was pleased that his expectation was about $100,000 too high. He added that although the cleanup efforts needed to take place immediately, village officials remained conscious of the budget throughout the process.
“We also felt that paying now would save us in the long run,” Fare said. He explained that the sooner roads were cleared, the fewer the potential problems, like a storm drain getting clogged and backing up.
Fare said that the village has received numerous compliments from residents about the speed of the cleanup, and he noted that many employees left their families at home without power to come to work and take care of the village.