Trash Ordinance Violators Can Be Fined Up To $2,500

Information reprinted with permission of the Courier Times, local newspaper New Castle, Indiana

Trash ordinance violators can be fined up to $2,500

Posted: Friday, November 4, 2016 6:00 am

If you live in New Castle, be advised: Mayor Greg York wants all city residents to know that continued abuses of the city-provided trash service will not be tolerated.

The mayor pointed out that he and city council members spent the first half of the year discussing what can be done to reduce the number of people setting out large trash items like mattresses, couches and televisions, expecting the city to pick them up free of charge. Likewise, the city isn’t in the business of hauling off trees that have been cut down, shrubs that have been pulled up or other similar debris that is the responsibility of the property owner, the renter or the contractor involved.

“I’m asking the general public, homeowners and renters, to be considerate. I’ve got high expectations of wanting to keep our community clean and I want owners to be accountable for the trash and the trees and bushes out in front of their property,” the mayor said. “We also have a lot of renters who move and think the city is supposed to be responsible for hauling off all the stuff they leave behind. That is definitely not the case. We are not in the trash hauling business.”

York announced the hiring of a code enforcement officer, Allan Bramlett, at a recent meeting of the city council. He said he’s giving fair warning now that after the first of the year, he’s instructing Bramlett to start issuing fines and citing people into city court who continue to violate the trash ordinance.

Those who fail to comply with the ordinance can be fined $1,000 for a first violation, $1,500 for a second violation, $2,000 for a third violation and $2,500 for each subsequent violation. The mayor said he doesn’t want to fine people, but added he’s tired of talking about putting a stop to abuses and said it’s time to start taking the kind of action people won’t ignore.

“People need to be responsible for their own trash and stop throwing it out alongside the street,” the mayor said. “I’m asking the general public to be respectful of the city’s curb appeal. We’re bringing prospective new companies to town and we need a nice, clean community with good curb appeal.”

The ordinance also states that the city will pick-up only household trash and that everything must be placed in the green trash totes provided by the city. The mayor said the city is going to start limiting the number of large trash items it collects to just three per week per household and that those items should be set out the morning any given resident’s trash is normally collected, never before then.

“What’s considered large trash? As far as I’m concerned, if it doesn’t fit in the tote it’s large trash,” York said. “And if it’s set out two or three days before their normal collection day we’re going to start fining them.”

The trash ordinance specifies several things the city cannot pick up including tires, televisions and toxic materials. Those items may be disposed of by contacting the Henry County Solid Waste Management District at 765-529-1691. There is a small fee for disposing of televisions.

“A lot of people don’t appreciate what they do at the solid waste management office,” York said. “They can dispose of those types of things through that office and it helps us all. It saves our landfill space, it saves the look of our street corners. People need to get on board with the services they offer because there are items the city just does not pick up!”

Also, the mayor is asking people not to rake their leaves into the street. Instead, rake them to near the edge of the street and leave them there so the large vacuum trucks now making their rounds on a daily basis can easily access them and suck them up.

“Raking them into the streets just clogs up storm drains and causes problems down at the treatment plant. If people will get them close to the street, but not in the street, we’ll take it from there,” York said.

Questions about the city trash ordinance can be directed to the mayor’s office at 765-529-7605 or the street department at 765-521-6831.