Snow removal tax on ballot in ‘big snow country’

Associated Press

Laurium – Snow is on the fall ballot in at least one Upper Peninsula community.

Residents in Laurium will be asked to renew a tax for snow removal for the next five years. Village administrator Ed Vertin tells The Mining Gazette the tax should raise roughly $24,000 in the first year.

Why a snow removal millage? Vertin says it’s simple: “We live in big snow country.”

Indeed, Laurium is in the northwest Upper Peninsula on the Keweenaw Peninsula, 500 miles from Lansing. It has roughly 1,900 residents. Snowfall is measured in feet, not inches, thanks to the influence of Lake Superior.

The tax pays for plowing streets, dropping sand on streets and keeping snowbanks cut back, often on overtime. Vertin says snow doesn’t take a holiday in the Upper Peninsula.