City Councilor William J. Macek.
With an estimated six to eight inches of snow still in the middle of Haverhill streets the day after last week’s nor’easter, City Councilor William J. Macek isn’t buying the story blaming equipment failures for the problem.
Macek, who has placed his concerns on Tuesday night’s City Council agenda, has a few theories of his own, ranging from how snow clearing is administered to whether equipment was pulled from streets too early.
“It wasn’t just one street. It was almost a city-wide experience,” he told WHAV.
The city councilor said his telephone rang constantly Wednesday morning and his email box filled fast. After talking with residents, he said he toured the city and compared city streets with surrounding towns.
“Cross the Haverhill line and it was like I went into another world.”
Macek has asked Mayor James J. Fiorentini and Public Works Director Michael K. Stankovich to come to Tuesday’s meeting prepared to answer specific questions. These include a list of equipment, what time plowing began, what preparations were made ahead of time and when work stopped. Other questions center on the administration of the department following years of budget cutting.
“The organizational chart and the responsibilities of the city equipment and also the private equipment needs to be rethought,” Macek said.
He explained the city once was divided into six or seven districts with a foreman for each. Macek also wonders whether workers quit too early. “It’s been suggested to me the plows were pulled too early and it continued to snow.”
Besides the mayor and public works director, Macek said, council President John A. Michitson has invited Police Chief Alan R. DeNaro to give his perspective. Fiorentini, while taking blame for poor street conditions, suggested parking enforcement added to the problem.
Macek said residents simply want answers.
“We have to make sure it doesn’t happen again and figure out why it happened this time.”
The councilor is asking residents to voice their concerns and share their observations at Tuesday night’s meeting, beginning at 7:30, after the mayor’s State of the City Address, at the new Hunking School.