After discovering issues with high volume at the bulk garbage pick-up site north of the soccer fields on Sixth Avenue, the Hoopeston City Council opted to change its bulk garbage pick-up plans at last week’s meeting.
The council had discussed the issues with the bulk pick-up site at a previous meeting, recognizing that the plan of just leaving the container out in the open would not work due to the amount of work it created for city employees and Republic Services, and opted to ask representatives from Republic Services to attend last week’s meeting.
General Manager Dan Winters and Toby Wolfe, each representing Republic Services, spoke during the meeting.
Winters said the bulk pick-up site created volumes of garbage pick-up they didn’t have before when the city had bulk garbage pick-up at individual locations in town.
Winters said each roll-off container will hold 1,800 tons of material and they had threw in two free ones for the city.
Wolfe said Republic considered a couple different solutions to the problem, which he summed as being caused by the fact that “everyone in the county knows it’s there at the soccer field or can see it from Route 1,” and suggested moving the containers to a fenced in area or building and suggested only opening it on Saturdays.
Wolfe and Winters also added that Republic Services has gone fully-automated on its pick-up routes so driver’s no longer have to leave the vehicle to pick-up garbage containers.
Goodwine took Wolfe’s suggestion and recommended they open the bulk garbage site twice-a-month on Saturdays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Winters also recommended putting up a banner telling people what can and can’t be put in the roll-off containers.
This prompted a discussion of how the new system would be set-up.
The council decided to set up the bulk garbage containers behind City Hall on the first and third Saturdays of each month and have someone on-hand to monitor what is being thrown away.
Mayor Bill Crusinberry said this new system would start July 20 from 6 a.m.-noon. People will need to show identification to prove they are a city resident before they can utilize the container.
Winters suggested giving this new option a couple months to see how it works out, feeling that the volume of garbage they receive will taper off after a while, then the city can evaluate the situation and discuss it further with Republic if necessary.
“We’ll work with you,” he said.
After the decision was made, the council requested the container on Sixth Avenue be removed before the fireworks displays July 3 and Wolfe said it would be removed prior to the fireworks.
In other business, Alderman Alex Houmes reported that the new playground equipment on the northside of McFerren Park would be completed and opened by July 6.
The equipment was purchased after a tree fell on the old equipment during a bit of severe weather that passed through the city last year.
Houmes also reported that the Hoopeston Jaycees plan to have a new concrete pad poured in the park for the National Sweetcorn Festival corn line and will also have the sidewalk to the Girl Scout House redone.
In other business:
- Goodwine informed the council that the appropriations ordinance must be passed on July 16. The ordinance will be on display for 10 days and a public meeting was set for 6:45 p.m. July 16 at city hall.
- Alderman Jeff Wise informed the council that the city had received a bid from A&A Concrete of Ludlow to perform the city’s Motor Fuel Tax road work from the McFerren Park back entrance to Ninth Avenue on West Elm Street.
- Wise also discussed the tree situation in the city.
He said 150-200 trees needed to be removed. While they are addressing the trees that need to removed immediately, other trees will take quite a while to get to.
Wise said he had been asked by residents if they can take down their own trees and he said they have to have a permit.
Wise was asked about hiring someone to take down the trees for the city.
Wise said it would cost “serious money” to do so and wouldn’t be feasible for the city.
Crusinberry said the city may need more employees to take on the task as it is cheaper to do it in-house.
Houmes later said there are about 40-plus trees in McFerren Park and 10-plus in Northside and Union Park that need removed.
Wise said Street and Alley Superintendent Wade Gocking has a list of the trees and will rate the ones that need to come down first.
- Houmes announced that the city has completed the needed steps to demolish a fire-damaged house on North Market Street that has been the subject of many complaints from neighbors.
Houmes said the city will be getting bids for an asbestos inspection of the property and, after that is completed, they will be able to demolish the house.
- Houmes announced that the Hoopeston Rotary had donated $800 for new trees.
- The Hoopeston Area FFA Alumni Association thanked the city for use of the McFerren Park Annex during its recent tractor pull.
The Hoopeston City Council will next meet at 7 p.m. July 16 at City Hall. A public meeting to discuss the city’s appropriations ordinance will take place at 6:45 p.m.