The arctic blast that knocked out Texas last week also hit the city of Horseshoe Bay’s budget for more than $115,000 in overtime and repair expenses.
During the City Council’s regular meeting Tuesday, Feb. 23, Finance Director Margie Cardenas presented a spreadsheet with a breakdown of costs incurred.
The majority of the overtime hours came from the Utilities Department. Staff put in 835.5 overtime hours, which adds up to $30,379.13.
Much of that came while repairing a 12-inch sewer line, which cost $40,750 in supplies and materials.
Cardenas said the staff is filing insurance claims for many repairs. Councilors had also approved a disaster declaration, which puts the city in line for possible federal funds.
The Horseshoe Bay Fire Department put in 618 overtime hours at a cost of $22,979.20. Fire Chief Brent Batla said that was for two reasons.
“I brought in a crew the night before (the storm hit),” he said. “We upped staff and wanted to also double our strength. We stayed at a high level for six days until we were able to go back to normal. (During that time), we ran 10 percent of our call volume for this year.”
Firefighters answered calls for fire alarms and EMS that included people slipping on the ice and cars in ditches.
The crews used brush trucks on a majority of the calls to keep the much higher-priced fire engines at the station unless they were absolutely needed in an emergency.