Grand Lake trash proposal includes fines, ‘pay as you throw’ components |

Grand Lake trash proposal includes fines, ‘pay as you throw’ components

Tonya Bina
Sky-Hi Daily News
Grand County, CO Colorado
Byron Hetzler/Sky-Hi Daily News
Byron Hetzler/Sky-Hi Daily News | Sky-Hi Daily News

In an effort to address the problem of human-habituated wildlife in the wilderness-neighboring town of Grand Lake, town officials are exploring new trash laws.

If a visiting bear or raccoon gets into garbage and creates a trash mess on one’s property or the town street, a resident could be held responsible, according to a proposed law in Grand Lake for which an April 26 public hearing has been set.

Grand Lake’s newly proposed waste disposal ordinance calls for a minimum $100 fine for garbage spread on any property from an unsecured container.

It also mandates that trash containers be located curbside only between the hours of 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on the day of trash pick-up service.

The town’s code enforcer ultimately would police trash-bin violations.

The law does not, however, mandate wildlife-proof trash containers, but “strongly recommends” people utilize such containers.


A “pay-as-you-throw” centralized trash-collection facility is included in the draft law, allowing for part-time homeowners, full-time residents or visitors to dump their trash in a public bin.

The law was drafted upon the recommendation of the town’s trash ad-hoc committee. The committee was formed to explore solutions to the town’s trash problems after the town adopted its previous law, which mandated trash service for all residences.

Second-home owners came out vehemently opposed to that law, however, due to the limited nature of their trash needs. The town issued a moratorium on enforcement of that law, formed the committee and recently extended the moratorium until May 1.

Poaching of private Dumpsters and wildlife habituation were reasons the town steered toward a new approach.

The new draft law’s response to second-home owner opposition is a community Dumpster, paid for through special “pay-as-you-throw” garbage-bag purchases.

Not using the specific pay-as-you-throw bags for trash thrown in the public trash facility would be illegal, according to the draft law.

Pay-as-you-throw bags, the law states, would be purchased from the town of Grand Lake or from an “authorized distributor.”

And the Town of Grand Lake may not be the agency running the town’s pay-as-you-throw trash solution.

Town officials soon will be seeking proposals from companies or individuals willing to operate the pay-as-you-throw system in town, according to the town’s code enforcement officer, Dan Korkowski.

Operation of the facility would entail hauling away the Dumpster trash and finding a way to vend the designated trash bags.

The contracted distributor would either locate the pay-as-you-throw facility on private property or would apply for a conditional use permit for use of the town’s land.

Possible town-owned sites for a pay-as-you-throw facility are at the town road and bridge structures behind the car wash, or on town land at the parking lot behind the Grand Lake Art Gallery, The Sagebrush and The Lariat Saloon.

At least one trash-hauling business already has shown interest in running the pay-as-you-throw trash operation in Grand Lake, Korkowski said.

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