Village trashes residents’ garbage tickets

By on March 13, 2009

by Martha Quetsch
Village officials will make Elburn’s garbage ordinance more lenient and void all tickets received by residents in 2008 for violating it.

Elburn trustees decided this Monday, after a 30-day public comment period on the ordinance the Village Board approved in May 2008. The ordinance states that garbage and recycling bins may be placed on the parkway no earlier than 6 p.m. on Tuesday, and must be removed no later than 11 p.m. on Wednesday.

Elburn Police Chief Jim Linane said he wants the village to approve a less restrictive garbage pickup ordinance in response to residents’ concerns.

“It made some sense that we need to change the hours,” Linane said.

The police chief said he was concerned about seniors having to put their garbage out in the dark, and about some businesses and people whose work hours did not allow them to comply with the ordinance.

Linane suggested the village should allow people to put their trash cans out starting at 3 p.m. Tuesday, and bring them in from the curb by 9 a.m. Thursday, the day after garbage pickup. The Village Board is expected to vote in favor of this proposed ordinance change on Monday, as all trustees agree the revision is needed.

During the first few months the existing ordinance was in effect, the Police Department issued warnings to violators and distributed flyers to let people know about it. In the fall, began issuing tickets to violators.

People who objected to receiving a ticket had an opportunity to appeal the tickets. Police voided 72 of the 130 tickets they issued in 2008 for garbage ordinance violations. The department will reimburse the remaining 58 people who were ticketed for fines they paid, totaling about $1,450.

Since December, the police have not ticketed violators because the Village Board imposed a temporary moratorium on enforcement of the ordinance while village officials reviewed it for possible changes.

Another change Linane proposed for the refuse pickup ordinance is allowing residents to place bags of leaves on the parkway at any time during October and November. Under the current ordinance, they cannot place the bags at the curb until 6 p.m. Tuesday.

The reason village officials created the ordinance nine months ago was that some residents were putting their trash receptacles on the parkway so far in advance of pickup that their garbage blew all over their neighborhoods. In addition, other people left their garbage bins out long after pickup, which some residents said was unsightly.