Grand Lake to ponder ‘Pay as you Throw’ trash system
October 29, 2009
Grand Lake’s moratorium on mandatory trash service has been extended for another six months as the town hashes out a new approach to the controversial law.
A five-person ad hoc committee made up of two Grand Lake part-time homeowners, two town board members and one full-time homeowner recommended the town nix the mandatory trash requirement and instead create a community Dumpster area with a 12-foot by 12-foot building and a large wildlife-proof trash facility as part of a “Pay as You Throw” trash system.
Anyone would be able to dispose of trash at the community bin, as long as the trash is inside special bags purchased at Town Hall or from town merchants, according to the proposal.
For “Pay as You Throw,” bags would be the size of a 30-gallon leaf bag capable of holding about three kitchen trash bags, explained town Code Enforcement Officer Dan Korkowski, who delivered the findings of the committee to town board members on Monday.
Suggested price of the special trash bags ranges from $5 to $7 a bag. Bag proceeds would cover the cost of the trash service and the structure needed, Korkowski said.
“Second-home owners on the committee said this is a system (they) would use,” Korkowski said.
Town officials estimate the enterprise would cost the town $20,000 to $25,000 on the front-end, but would be paid off in less than 10 years. Factored into that rough estimate is a camera system at the trash site to monitor illegal dumping.
“I like this a lot better than what we had in the past,” said Town Trustee Benton Johnson.
The mandatory trash law originally was approved in January of 2009, but due to the flood of correspondence from citizens opposing its passage, the town suspended it through the summer.
Citizens opposed the mandatory trash law for its burden to part-time homeowners, who lack the need for year-round service. The law was passed due to the widespread problem of illegal trash dumping in private Dumpsters and wildlife problems related to trash.
“When we’ve had an ordinance that didn’t work for the community, we’ve taken it through an ad-hoc process and gotten good feedback,” said Town Manager Shane Hale.
The ad-hoc trash committee also suggested a wildlife-proof trash container requirement for all households as part of the proposed law.
In further suspending the mandatory trash law, town lawmakers will next review the revised “Pay as You Throw” concept at a Grand Lake Planning Commission meeting, possibly in November.
– Tonya Bina can be reached at 970-887-3334 ext. 19603 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.