Thursday and Friday were just too good to be true.
After hitting 60 degrees late last week, the area got a rude return to winter with howling winds and bitter cold Saturday, and now there could be a couple inches of snow Monday.
The National Weather Service is forecasting between one and three inches of snow Monday in North Reading. Snow is likely to begin falling after 4 a.m. and will continue into the afternoon, according to the weather service.
The impact on the commute should be minimal, as schools are closed for vacation and many businesses are closed for the Presidents Day holiday.
This weather system comes at a time when the town has spent $650,000 in snow and ice removal, straining resources and budgets, Town Administrator Greg Balukonis told the Board of Selectmen on Tuesday night. The town had budgeted $125,000 for snow removal this winter, with another $175,000 in reserve.
Some residential-area sidewalks still remain snow-covered, but the town has tried to concentrate its resources in the most populated areas and locations around schools, Balukonis said.
Selectman Stephen O'Leary said the town's responsibility is to clear sidewalks within school zones and routes leading up to them. Other communities require homeowners to clear sidewalks in front of their residences, but North Reading only requires businesses to shovel abutting walkways.
A Supreme Judicial Court decision last summer puts some onus on homeowners to shovel sidewalks in front of their homes, O'Leary said. The decision requires property owners to "make a reasonable effort" to clear sidewalks and keep them safe after a snowfall.