Mayor Mark Lauretti said the city needs to improve emergency communications with the public during storms, based on what happened after the major snowstorm of Feb. 8 and 9. \u201cWe\u2019ll make an effort to do a better job, no doubt,\u201d Lauretti said. Lauretti said he has heard the criticism from people, including those left wondering when their roads would be plowed as the start of the work week neared. \u201cI\u2019ll accept that,\u201d he said of the validity of the complaints on a lack of communication. He stressed that the communication glitches weren\u2019t due to \u201clack of effort\u201d by the city. Lauretti said two reverse 9-1-1 calls scheduled to go out on that Saturday and Sunday apparently did not reach everyone, with no explanation yet on what happened. \u201cSomething went wrong with the reverse 9-1-1 system,\u201d he said. \u201cI thought the calls went out. It appears that some people got them and some people did not. We\u2019re still trying to evaluate what went wrong.\u201d Piggybacks on the state system The city uses the state system for reverse 9-1-1 calls, which are phone messages sent to residents to provide information on emergencies. \u201cWe piggyback on the state system,\u201d Lauretti said. The mayor said that system has worked well with previous emergencies, including other major snowstorms and hurricanes, but it could be time to make a change.\u00a0\u201cWe may have to rethink our system and get our own,\u201d Lauretti said. Some cities and towns use their own outside vendors to handle distributing emergency communication messages, although there is an additional cost in taking that approach. Lauretti also said the city\u2019s website could be turned into a better resource for people during emergencies. \u201cI\u2019ll accept that as well,\u201d he said. The city has a part-time city employee who oversees the municipal website, at www.cityofshelton.org. Historic snowfall amounts While some people may have been upset about how long it took to get their streets plowed, Lauretti said, the city was dealing with a historic snowfall. \u201cPlows couldn\u2019t move, so we had to get payloaders,\u201d he said. \u201cPlows couldn\u2019t make it up some streets \u2014 they had to go down them. There were challenges on where to even put all the snow.\u201d Lauretti said Shelton is a community with many hills and densely developed areas, such as downtown and the Pine Rock Park area. There are many narrow streets, and on-street parking is common in some parts of the city. \u201cThe grades of the roads can be very challenging,\u201d he said. 'The critics never had to face this' The harshest critics are downplaying the magnitude of having to clear about three feet of snow, according to the mayor. \u201cThe critics never had to face this,\u201d he said. \u201cThey have no idea what it takes. This was a 100-year storm.\u201d He said amount of snow that fell presented public safety concerns as well as just having to contend with moving the snow from roadways. More payloaders \u201cWe wouldn\u2019t have prepared any differently except if I knew we were going to get that much snow, I would have gone out and rented more payloaders,\u201d he said. The city, like many other municipalities, turned to outside contractors to help with snow removal. Lauretti said Shelton used local private contractors who \u201clive and pay taxes in Shelton\u201d to assist public works crews. As for the budget impact of the recent snowstorm, Lauretti said the city probably spent more money than it did during the previous three winters combined. How much the city spends on snow removal varies greatly from year to year, he said, noting it has been as high as $170,000 and as low as $1,000 in recent years.