BUFFALO, N.Y. – Buffalo made enough progress digging out from a record-breaking 7-foot snowfall to re-open for business Monday.
City and county offices were operating again and most major roads were passable. A New Year's Eve ball drop and a celebration around the arrival of the Olympic torch were expected to go on as planned.
But Buffalo school students, who had been scheduled to report to class on Wednesday, will get an extended holiday break. With many streets still unplowed, schools will be kept closed through the rest of the week.
The official snow total for the five-day storm, which rolled in on Christmas Eve and moved south into ski country on Friday, was 82.7 inches. At least four deaths were blamed on the weather.
More snow was forecast for Buffalo and surrounding areas through New Year's Day, with the city expected to get 6 inches to a foot.
The state is asking Washington for a disaster declaration, which would open the way to federal aid.
Mayor Anthony Masiello lifted the Buffalo's travel ban Sunday evening, and buses and subway service was running at near full service Monday.
But an army of snow-removal crews, including squads from the National Guard and the cities of Rochester and Toronto, worked on the side streets. Many plowed roads remained narrow and rutted with packed snow and ice.