Residents talking trash
DUMPING TRASH County dumpsters, like this one on Lee Roberts Road in Causeyville, are cluttered with non-household trash. Some county residents, though, say they prefer the current system over a door-to-door service that would cost more money. Photo by Fredie Carmichael/The Meridian Star
By Fredie Carmichael/The Meridian Star
Oct. 23, 2001
Some Lauderdale County residents are tired of paying $60 a year to haul their own garbage several times a week to dumpsters placed around the county.
Others, though, said they prefer the dumpster system over door-to-door pickup a service they believe would cost them more money and create problems for the county.
County supervisors voted 4-1 last week to continue charging the $60 annual garbage fee despite a request from one resident to change the method of collection.
The county has been charging residents $60 a year since 1993.
County Supervisor Ray Boswell of District 5, who cast the sole no vote, said residents wouldn't have to pay a garbage fee if the county did a better job policing trash dumpsters.
Dana McKinley, who lives in Rainbow Lakes, agreed with Boswell. She told supervisors last week that she has a tough time getting to her dumpster, about three miles from her house.
McKinley said she would like to see county residents vote on a new system for garbage collection.
In a 1992 referendum, county residents decided overwhelmingly to keep the dumpster system intact rejecting door-to-door pickup by a vote of 76 percent to 24 percent.
But, McKinley said, residents weren't informed when they voted.
County engineer Neal Carson told McKinley last week that she could pay $22.50 for private, twice-weekly, door-to-door garbage service if she didn't like the county system.
She would still have to pay the $60 annual county garbage fee.
Billy Porter, a spokesman for Waste Management which handles the door-to-door garbage pickup in Meridian said his company could offer similar service to the county.
Porter said door-to-door pickup would cost residents $6-$10 a month for his company to provide countywide, once-a-week garbage pickup.
Others, though, like the county system. Margaret Bradford, a resident of the Clarkdale community, said dogs rip into her garbage if she leaves it outside for 15 minutes.
Supervisor Craig Hitt of District 3 said many people prefer the dumpsters. He said he is willing to consider door-to-door pickup, "but I just don't think the county residents will support it."
Hitt said he would like to see the county do a better job "cracking down on these people who dump things into those green boxes other than household trash."
Fredie Carmichael is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. Call him at 693-1551, ext. 3228, or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.