More crews will now be available to help fix Omaha streets ravaged by potholes. On Tuesday, the Omaha City Council approved spending $450,000 to hire three private contractors to fill potholes during peak times of the year. The council narrowly passed the measure by four votes to three.According to city officials, pothole spikes always come after a big snowstorm and Omaha's street maintenance department says its crews are overworked. Department officials say contractors will allow them to keep up with demand, which during peak pothole season can be up to 4,000 complaints a month. City human resources director Tim Young says he's fielded calls from the angry families of road crew employees who take issue with the apparent lack of a work-life balance. Council member Vinny Palermo says the measure is a temporary fix to staffing issues in the department. "I probably wouldn't be against this one, if our staffing levels were anywhere close to being fulfilled, but they're not."According to the street maintenance department, the average time to address potholes is about two weeks, but with private contractors, repairs could be sped up to five or six days.
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