Citywide cleanup here June 4-9Jamestown residents can help make the upcoming annual citywide residential curbside cleanup easier for city workers — and cheaper for taxpayers — by obeying a few simple rules.
By: Kari Lucin, The Jamestown Sun
Jamestown residents can help make the upcoming annual citywide residential curbside cleanup easier for city workers — and cheaper for taxpayers — by obeying a few simple rules.
People should be sure to put their trash materials on the street close to the curb, put items out no more than two days in advance and only put things out that will be picked up.
“It’s getting better every year,” said Roger Mayhew, Jamestown’s sanitation foreman, calling the citizens of Jamestown some of the “best in the state” for cleaning up their yards each year after the curbside cleanup ends.
This year the cleanup will be June 4-7, with crews visiting the southeast section of the city June 4, the southwest section June 5, the northwest June 6 and the northeast June 7.
Senior citizens or people with disabilities who need assistance may call the Jamestown Area Chamber of Commerce at 252-4830.
Groups and individuals are encouraged to help clean up public areas in town, such as parks, during cleanup week, and can pick up trash bags at the Chamber of Commerce from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 4-8.
Trash materials should be put out no more than two days in advance, but before 7 a.m. the day they will be picked up. City crews don’t return to an area after they’ve been there once, either, so putting items on the curb late isn’t going to work.
About 35 city employees from several departments, 19 trucks and six loaders will work together for the citywide cleanup this year, removing hundreds of tons of garbage from the city.
Last year, they picked up 295.04 tons, Mayhew said, crediting the city’s street department for organizing the event.
Prior to 2000, the city cleanup involved city residents going to the baler and dropping their items off — with people having to wait in their vehicles for long periods of time and backing traffic to the baler up for as much as three or four miles, Mayhew said.
What can be picked up
The biggest mistake people make, Mayhew said, is putting items on the grassy boulevards instead of on the street near the curb. That costs the taxpayer, because instead of using a machine to lift up the pile and move it in one scoop, city employees have to pick up the trash by hand.
There are also things people shouldn’t try to get rid of during the curbside cleanup, because the city cannot take them. Those items include household appliances and electronics such as refrigerators, air conditioners, televisions, computers and microwaves; automotive products such as tires, antifreeze and batteries; cars, boats and large-scale building or remodeling debris; paints, solvents, paint thinners, primers, varnishes and stains; power lawn mowers, propane tanks and gas cans with gas in them; biomedical waste such as syringes; pure metal items; and normal household garbage.
“When they put that out to the curb, we’re not going to touch it,” Mayhew said.
And trying to hide it in a larger load of trash won’t help either — then the whole load won’t get picked up.
Lots of things will get picked up, though.
Tree branches should be less than 4 feet long, less than 2 inches in diameter and tied into bundles that weigh less than 50 pounds.
Basic household items such as furniture, toys and mattresses can be put out in neat piles. It’s important not to put things out too far in advance of the cleanup day, however, because vermin can nest in this type of debris.
Small-scale building, remodeling or landscaping debris can also be placed on the curb for pickup, provided there’s not too much of it.
“If you’re going to remodel a house and put out a pile 5-foot tall and 25 foot deep, we’re not going to touch it,” Mayhew warned, but if the volume is about the same or less than that of a level pickup truck bed, that’s OK.
People should put those in neat piles of like materials. Wood, fencing or non-creosoted landscaping timbers should be broken apart and tied in bundles less than 4 feet long and weighing less than 50 pounds.
Carpet and padding should also be rolled up and tied together to be picked up.
What to do with the rest
People with items that are plain metal should bring those things to the city’s baler facility, located at 3020 18th St. SE, if they don’t want to sell it to a scrapyard for profit.
Other items that can be brought to the baler are household electronics, fluorescent or compact fluorescent light bulbs, boats, large-scale remodeling debris, paint and other solvents, automotive tires and automotive oil. Some of those items have disposal fees, but others do not.
Normal household garbage should be disposed of on the usual garbage pickup day.
Household appliances, boats, metals, cars and automotive batteries can be brought to Gerdau Ameristeel Recyling at 1510 10th St. SE or West End Hide, Fur & Metal Co. at 3445 82nd Ave. NW.
Antifreeze can be poured into the sanitary sewer system.
Anyone with biomedical waste should contact Central Valley Health District, Jamestown Regional Medical Center or a clinic for instructions about what to do with it.
Power lawn mowers, propane tanks and gas cans with gas in them can be brought to either Gerdau Ameristeel or West End Hide.
Both the city baler facility and the Recycling Center will be open for extended hours during clean-up week. The baler will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday. The Recycling Center will be open from noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon.
Consequences for breaking rules
Most of the time, people obey the rules for the curbside cleanup.
“We very rarely ever have any issues with this,” said Scott Edinger, Jamestown police chief. “People are pretty cooperative and get things cleaned up very quickly.”
Generally, if someone puts something on the curb that can’t be picked up, Mayhew will tag the item with a bright orange sticker that tells the owner what he or she needs to do with it.
After the cleanup, if the items are left behind on the street, the Jamestown Police Department could issue a junk notice for its removal. The junk notice allows a person a period of time in which to remove the item. If it isn’t removed, a person could be summoned to court.
If the item is dangerous, the city could clean it up and send the resident a bill for it.
Generally, such measures aren’t necessary, though.
“I think everybody wants to keep the city looking nice and clean,” Edinger said.
People with questions should call the city baler at 252-5223. Gerdau Ameristeel can be reached at 252-0110, West End Hide at 252-0150, CVHD at 252-8130 and Jamestown Regional Medical Center at 252-1050.
Sun reporter Kari Lucin can be reached at 701-952-8453 or by email