CHARLESTON, W.Va. — State Transportation Secretary Paul Mattox predicts the state Division of Highways will exhaust the money it has budgeted for snow and ice removal this winter.

Mattox said just about every storm over the last few months has been a statewide event.

“We’re about 11 million dollars over (in spending) where we planned to be at this point and time and we still have 30 percent (of winter remaining),” Mattox said.

The budget shows the DOH has spent 89 percent of its Snow Removal & Ice Control Budget. Mattox said they will have to move some money around.

“We’ll work with staff and go over our budget again and rearrange some projects,” Mattox said.

The DOH has already used 269,000 tons of salt this winter.

Mattox said he knows Spring is getting closer by the day.

“I keep telling myself that to maintain my sanity,” he joked. “I look at the long range weather forecast and it’s very favorable in the coming weeks. It gives us some optimism and something to look forward to.”

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  • sam

    look at chuck ruyojn if you want to see how wvdoh waste money. stupid. must hhave naked pictures of someone with donkeys...

  • Independent View

    Nick, you are so wrong. Turnpike tolls DO NOT go into the General Revenue Fund. The tolls are spent to maintain the Turnpike and are subject to the conditions contained in the original bond issue that paid for the design and construction of the Turnpike..
    I-79 & I-64 were built with taxpayer money, not bond issues as was the case with building and maintaining the Turnpike.

  • Nick

    Down between Beckley and Princeton the DOH guys were salting the road with blue skies. I witnessed this a couple of times this winter. The tolls should be abolished down in the southern counties because there is not a toll booth between Morgantown and Charleston or Huntington and Charleston. The money from the tolls goes into a general fund that the entire state uses. How many times have you driven by state road workers, and they are just standing around talking? I see this hundreds of times. We need to get more production out of them.

  • wvajoker

    Does this mean they may have to dip into the emergency fund they normally set up for this very type of situation. They have always in the past had it set up in the event that it was a worse than normal winter.

  • Fat Cats at the Top

    Keep his sanity give me a break he is not the one plowing the roads putting chains on taking chains off. Sliding down these hills going over the hill and getting stuck in ditches. They keep using sand to melt snow go figure I know it aids in traction but when they mix 2 or 3 buckets of sand to one salt there is not much melting there. Paul Mattox made $120,000 in 2012 probably made more in 2013. The men and woman that do the actual work make anywhere between $25,000-$40,000. There is something wrong with this picture. There is a gentleman that made $36,000 one year and the next made $90,000 the next he is in upper management in one of the districts. $50,000 raise !

    • packyeers

      I was told by a DOH regional Mgr. that someone in Charleston came up with the sand and salt mixture due to they are from the south where it does not freeze as much as it does here. Thus the mixture has saved the DOH 269 tons of money. However as the Mgr. said it does not work here. Also last year they did not come close to using their "budget".

  • WV Hillbilly

    269 tons total. Come on. Who writes this stuff? My bet is that they use more than that in a single storm. So, it begs the question, is anything we read here - accurate?

    • Aaron

      I would imagine that's a typo and it should be 269,000 tons.

      • Harpers Ferry

        A proof-reading error by WVMetronews? That NEVER happens.

    • Chris1529

      That number wouldn't even cover the smallest county's usage.

  • WV Proud

    I just want to say, that for the first time in decades, the DOH guys did an awesome job in South Berkeley County this round. We have over 16 inches in most parts and the roads off of main arteries are in decent shape. We live off the main state road on a secondary road and it was plowed early yesterday. Very shocking. Thanks!

  • Independent View

    Another suggestion: layoff the "Pretty Boy", Brent Walker who is trotted out before the media's cameras giving his flippant DOH "canned speech" about how well the DOH is prepared and is how well theyhandling the situation.
    His salary and benefits might pay for several loads of salt; something that could save lives. Grinning into a camera saves no lives.

    • Yep

      State employee salaries are public info. It is easy to see how much he makes. And how little people who actually work make.

  • Independent View

    Here's another novel approach: appoint another budget director and budget more funds for snow removal and transfer any remaining portion to "other projects." Simply reverse the procedure that DOH is presently using. Now, is that not a simple and painless solution" Sheech!

  • rick

    That is illegal under budget rules

  • Nettie

    If they are 11 million over where they expected to be and still have 11% of the budget left, that tells me that they probably don't use all of the budget on lighter years. How about we use the extra on lighter years to buy more trucks and to put aside in a "snowy day" fund to pay for extra temp drivers for bad years like this one. It would be a more proactive approach.

    • Employee

      The reason we cannot create a "snowy day" fund is becuase any left over money is needed for road construction projects. We already face a BIG shortfall in money with the amount of roads we maintain and without that leftover money, fewer road and bridge projects get completed.