CONCORD, NH – For the first time in years, New Hampshire will have nearly a full fleet of plow drivers to clear state roads, according to the Boston Globe newspaper. The state has raised its wages for contractors for the first time in six years, meaning snowplow operators who sought work elsewhere now are willing to work for the state.

Before the raise, plow operators working for towns in New Hampshire and Massachusetts could make twice what the state paid. New Hampshire pays $46 an hour for a six-wheel plow truck, still behind the wages of towns and the state of Massachusetts. Southern New Hampshire towns like Derry, Hampstead, and Plaistow pay $50 an hour and up, while Massachusetts pays $66 and up. The Department of Transportation says 425 contractors are signed up to plow for the state, but about 10 more drivers are needed for Southern New Hampshire.