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Storm plows cash into coffers of firms that clear parking lots, private streets

Posted January 10

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— Snowfall means steady work for David Bailey and his crews, who are hired by businesses to clear parking lots.

"We don't get it here, so when we get it, it's great to have it. Otherwise, I wouldn't have any work," said Bailey, owner of Bailey's Backyard.

Bailey said he tries to keep the staff of his lawn and garden service on full time throughout the year, but it's difficult in the winter without snowstorms.

"I'd love to see six, seven, eight events a year because, in January and February, when nobody's got any money, somebody's got to clean this mess up," he said. "There's a lot of contractors like me. We don't want to lose our help because we don't have any work for them in the winter. Now, we do."

Private plowing services like Bailey's and George Miser's charge about $150 an hour on average.

Miser, owner of Miser Landscaping, has had 12 men working to clear private streets and sidewalks.

"We couldn't keep up," Miser said. "We're out steady without a break, we don't get sleep, and everybody's calling us nonstop to get us to the next location."

A snowstorm like Saturday's can generate up to $20,000 for his business, he said. That allows him to keep his staff on the payroll, repair equipment and stock up on supplies so the business is primed for the busy spring season.

"When snow comes, it gives my guys an opportunity to work. We stay busy," he said.

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