April 23, 2009

Clean-up Week issues addressed by commissioners

By Brenda L. Shelkey

Beautification Day has been scheduled for Saturday, May 2, and Underwood’s Clean-Up Week will coincide during the week of May 4-9. Commissioners agreed that Clean-Up Week is a good idea, but were concerned that the service has been abused in the past and could mean the end of the program if residents of Underwood continue to set out items that neither the city nor the dump can take. Commissioner Leon Weisenburger Jr. told commissioners that the fridge pickup has been sorely abused by some community members. He spoke with Jerry Radke last year during the Clean-Up Week when Radke was overwhelmed with the additional items people had left. Weisenburger said, "We are getting a lot of fridges, but a lot of other things - lawnmowers and wood - a little bit of everything that we shouldn’t be taking." Commissioner Earl Cottingham liked the idea of the Clean-Up Week, but suggested trying another tact. He said, "I like the idea, but we need to do something that works. On the fridge bit, couldn’t we put down a few hours, and if they don’t have the fridge there during those times, we don’t take it?" City Auditor Diane Schell explained that the problem was that residents were dropping fridges off at any time it was convenient for them, not following the listed time frame. Last year, residents were also dropping off things that they shouldn’t have been dropping off. Schell said, "Then once it’s there, Jerry is spending a lot of time having to clean up items that shouldn’t be taken."



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