Olive Branch Mayor Scott Phillips Tuesday said street crews did as much as possible to keep city streets safe in the wake of the recent snow and ice that blanketed his city.
Phillips made his comments after Tuesday night’s Board of Aldermen meeting, where he categorized the city’s efforts as being “the best we could with the conditions that were given to us.”
“The first event was more of the rain, freezing rain, sleet and snow combination,” Phillips said. “We were out with crews around 3:30 a.m. for the first event and had everything sanded and salted as best we could, but unfortunately the storm kind of got ahead of us, as it did with most everyone I found.”
When snow struck on Monday, Phillips said the city was able to use something in its street department arsenal it typically does not need to use: a snow plow.
“We actually have a snow plow that was given to us several years ago and I think this was probably the first time that it was used,” Phillips said. “They were out with it Monday morning, pushing some snow around. But unfortunately, once you go over this type of snow, it packs pretty quickly and it’s not as easy to scrape off.”
That has been the case with Olive Branch and other after cities, even Wednesday after the fact. Main roads are passable but side streets have several ice and snow patches that drivers have to watch out for as they try to get around.
“With any municipality, you want to make your main roads passable and, unfortunately, the side roads and back streets suffer from that a little bit because you want to make sure your main traffic gets through safely,” Phillips said.
The mayor added another winter event such as what occurred last weekend and Monday may tax what supplies the city street department has available.
“In the street department, we do anticipate some of this, but you never know how much to anticipate,” Phillips said. “If we have another event next week, for instance, now we may start pushing it as far as what we budgeted for in anticipating winter weather.”
During Tuesday evening’s board meeting, aldermen approved plans for a new subdivision north of Church Road and west of Pleasant Hill. The Belle Point subdivision would consist of about 23.69 acres and is zoned for single-family residences.
The board also approved a final plan for Phase 1 of the Edgewater subdivision, a planned residential district in the area of Highway 178, Goodman Road East, Maple Grove Road and south of Highway 302.
The subdivision encompasses about 15.24 acres and would be divided into 30 lots and two open spaces.
Aldermen spent time in executive session to consider a new hire in the court department, a new hire and a promotion in the gas maintenance department, and an employee disciplinary matter in the ambulance department. The executive session also was called to discuss promotions and salary increases in the parks and recreation department, an employee disciplinary matter and request for administrative leave time in the sanitation department and a discussion with the city attorney about a possible acquisition of property.
Bob Bakken is Staff Writer and may be reached at 662-429-6397 ext. 240.