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City may change garbage collection policy

CINCINNATI (Jeff Hirsh) -- It may soon be possible to get another two-wheeler.  
Not a bicycle, but rather a two-wheeled garbage can.  The city of Cincinnati may modify its relatively new policy of one trash can per household.  While most folks can apparently get by with the 65-gallon trash carts the city gave out, there are those with big families or big messes who cannot.

On trash day on Crestline Avenue in Price Hill just about all the garbage cans are out.  In fact, the same is true citywide.  Last fall, the city distributed new trash carts to 100,000 residential customers.  The goal, a cleaner city and fewer injuries to trash collection crews.  Sanitation workers move fast and it helps to have a standardized garbage can so you know what you're getting.  It also helps because the cans have wheels.  They can be attached to the garbage trucks and lifted mechanically instead of by hand.  That's cut down on worker injuries by 30 percent.
The city's policy became one garbage can per household.  That's okay for about 90 percent of Cincinnatians, but not for everyone.

Jeffrey Mackey, a Price Hill resident, said, "For me it's enough. There's two of us living here and it's adequate.  There are large families that maybe need a larger can or a couple more."

And so the city is considering a change.  If you need a second trash can, you'll probably be able to get it.

Public Services Superintendent, Gerald Checco, said, "What we're doing now is tweaking the policy to make sure the issues we found in the first six months can be addressed."

Such as hilly and narrow streets, and the problem some folks have lugging a trash cart up the stairs.  Most residents kept the 65 gallon containers they were given.  But some traded those in and upgraded to bigger ones, leaving the city with 10,000 trash carts which could be given out to those needing another.
The city is also seeing an uptick in illegal dumping officials say.  The hope is giving out more trash cans will reduce that and keep the city cleaner; although, there has been progress.

The one-can limit has increased recycling.  That stuff goes into another container.  And recycling reduces landfill fees for the city, saving everybody money.  By the way, even though the city officially has a one trash can rule, it's not really being enforced.  For the most part whatever is put out is collected, but most people are doing their part and using the trash cans the city distributed.
A final decision on whether to provide a second trash can to those who request it, as well as other possible changes to garbage collection, will come in the fall.


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