Hundreds of tons of trash not normally picked up by the city of Clinton have been collected during Fall Clean Up Weeks past, and city officials are hoping many will similarly take advantage for this year’s edition.
The Council has designated Oct. 15-19 as Fall Clean Up Week and suspended regular practices to pick up those items not normally collected by the city. Items that cannot be processed at the Sampson County Landfill or are hazardous to city staff will not be accepted.
The City of Clinton Public Works and Utilities Department is encouraging residents to use Fall Clean Up as an opportunity to dispose of items that are not usually allowed to be placed curbside. The city offers two such weeks a year, but those who do not get rid of items in October will have to wait six months until April’s Spring Clean Up Week.
Items able to be collected — and historically placed by curbs citywide in past cleanup weeks — include chairs, televisions, couches, washers and dryers, refrigerators, mattresses and box springs, air conditioners, freezers and dishwashers. A maximum of four tires per home and tree limbs no larger than 6 inches in diameter and 5 feet long will also be accepted.
“There will be fliers on the water bills to talk about what are eligible activities,” said public works director Jeff Vreugdenhil. “We would strongly like to encourage people to separate items by categories, per the flier that will be in the water billing. It would be greatly appreciated and helpful to staff. Please separate tires from green waste and white goods, because they all have different areas of expertise as to where they have to go in the landfill.”
Vreugdenhil said there should be no wet paint, no wet paint cans and tires are limited to 4 per household. Public works manager Tony Steffen noted the importance of separating items, as well as adhering to the rules regarding paint and other excluded materials.
“We don’t want (items) all piled together. If the material is separated and not in a mass pile, it is easier to collect, because we have to separate it when we discard it,” Steffen has said. “We will take paint, as long as the lids are removed and there is dirt, sand or cat litter placed inside to dry it up. We don’t want it to spill all over.”
While numerous types of items could be picked up, there are a few exceptions. The city cannot collect those items not able to be processed by the Sampson County Landfill. In addition to oil-based paints, that includes car batteries, motor oils and insecticides, as well as demolished homes and sheds, auto parts, gasoline and other substances that present sticky and sometimes hazardous situations for those collecting and processing them.
The cleanup weeks have proven vastly successful, as participation has been steady.
As the city and its Council have made it a main goal to beautify the community through projects and programs, the city has held the biannual cleanup weeks as opportunities for residents to participate in the overall effort to make aesthetic improvements and further prevent blight in their neighborhoods. Officials have praised the two annual five-day periods with aiding helping to achieve that mission, while offering residents a curbside service.
Over the years, city residents have regularly taken advantage of the cleanup campaigns and hundreds of tons of trash not normally collected have been removed from homes, yards and streets through the effort in recent years.
More than 60 tons of waste was collected from curbs citywide during last year’s Fall Clean Up event. There were 26 tons of loose bulky items collected and delivered to the landfill, including various pieces of furniture and appliances, as well as another 36 tons of green waste items collected.
During the collection process, city workers also removed 101 electronic recyclable items from the debris for the city’s new e-cycling program, Vreugdenhil said. Those included 67 televisions, 20 computer monitors and other miscellaneous recyclable items. Any items able to be recycled were sorted from the refuse.
In addition to placing a reminder of the cleanup week on the back of utility bills, fliers announcing the opportunity will be posted at City Hall and the information disseminated to city residents by way of the ConnectCTY reverse messaging system.
“We look forward to a very successful Clean Up again,” said Vreugdenhil.
Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137 ext. 121 or via email at email@example.com.