Last Chance to Submit Names for the Plows!
Madisonians, you are running out of time. You have until 4:00pm, Friday, January 13, 2023, to submit your name suggestions for the Streets and Engineering Divisions snow removal equipment.
Photos and descriptions of the four vehicles available for naming can be found on the Streets Division’s “Name These Plows” website.
We’ve received over 1,000 unique name suggestions so far. Name suggestions have ranged from popular movies (The Big Leplowski) to 14th-century poems (Piers Plowman) to internet sensations (Salt Bae) to DC comic book villains (Captain Cold) to local politicians (Rep. Mark Plowcan) and many, many others. And there’s still time for your idea to be included, too.
How to Submit Names
Naming suggestions can emailed directly to email@example.com. There is no form to complete – just send an email with your suggestions.
Residents can submit one name, or several.
Your suggestions can be for all, or some, of the equipment eligible to be named. If your name is for a specific piece of equipment, please identify that vehicle in your email.
The Names We’re Looking For
The more pun-filled and playful the nickname, the better.
Pop culture, literary, local character, and other references are encouraged – preferably with a fun spin on this known (or obscure) entity.
Other cities and states have also undertaken snowplow naming contests in the recent past, and they have come up with some fantastic choices. Their lists make for good places to find inspiration to find a new spin on their submissions.
Ultimately, we’re hoping for a set of names that really highlights Madison’s creative and quirky spirit.
The Election Process
After the naming window has closed, a list of 10 finalists for each winter maintenance vehicle will be selected.
On January 23, 2023, Wisconsin Salt Wise will open the election so you can vote to choose the names. The election will close on February 3, 2023.
This will be a ranked choice election. While similar to the process used to name the electric compactors in 2022, the votes will be tallied differently.
Like with the electric compactors, when you vote, you will rank the finalist names by your order of your preference. The finalist name you like most will be your 1st Choice, your next favorite will be your 2nd Choice and so on.
Instead of a point system, the winning name for each equipment will be the one that has earned a majority of the votes cast.
There are many helpful videos that show how ranked choice works to determine who received a majority of the votes. Minnesota Public Radio and the Board of Elections New York City are two examples that provide a clear, visual, and brief explanations of this process.
About Wisconsin Salt Wise
Wisconsin Salt Wise is a coalition of several organizations with the goal to reduce salt pollution in our water. Their website has numerous resources for both homeowners and winter maintenance professions to be sure you are using salt correctly in the winter months. Their web address is www.wisaltwise.com.
More information about City of Madison winter operations can be found at www.cityofmadison.com/Winter.