SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- Springfield officials say the city uses salt to de-ice roadways but there's a conscious effort to cut back on its use.

Springfield Public Works Director Mark Mahoney tells The (Springfield) State Journal-Register that utilities haven't raised the issue of salinity in Lake Springfield and most of the city's roads are far from the lake. But the city has been monitoring its use of salt for years. The city also has experimented with alternatives like beet juice and fly ash but decided to stick with salting.

Mahoney says city workers will attend a snow removal conference in Indianapolis to hear about new techniques and technology. He says the city is open to alternatives while looking at cost and efficiency.

The city uses between 3,000 to 9,000 tons of salt per winter.

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Information from: The State Journal-Register, http://www.sj-r.com