Wednesday, June 22, 2005

More On Garbage

Looks like Eureka is going to raise their rate for garbage pick up again. Didn't they raise rates less than a year ago? Oh well, I still think the rates for garbage pick up are a bargain.

What's disturbing is that, yet again, the issue of "universal garbage service" is brought up with one council member, Chris Kerringan, obviously supporting it and another who doesn't seem to object to the idea. Kerrigan seems to be obsessed with the idea. Don't mean to be a conspiratorialist(?) but it makes me wonder if there's some other more nefarious reason for this obsession. As I mentioned earlier on this blog, I wonder if some want universal service so they have another source for taxes and fees since, once everyone has to pay for pick up, they can start adding a few pennies here and there to your service fee for any sort of reason as they do now with phone service?

The most disturbing thing about this issue is how easily it is for city council critters to accept the idea of forcing something on everyone in the city like it's no big deal.


At 8:52 AM, Blogger Jeff said...

You must be drawing on earlier statements by Kerrigan if universal collection is truly his obsession. The only statement in this article, "...Chris Kerrigan said the city was looking at the option..." doesn't indicate obsession to me. It sounds like stock response to a real problem. On Sunday I was walking down an alley in Eureka and saw a large, maybe 30", television in a dumpster labeled paper only. Universal collection isn't going to fix that problem, and I think it will only marginally effect the dumping of household garbage. Somehow, the community must identify and directly confront the perpetrators of dumping.

At 9:34 AM, Blogger Fred said...

Yes, earlier statements. It's just that every article I've read in the local papers about Universal Service always quotes Kerrigan. In fairness, I don't know that I've seen more than three or four articles on the subject in the last year, but seems like he's been mentioned in every one.

And, no, I don't dislike Kerrigan. I met him campaigning last election and found him pleasant enough.

At 11:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds more like Kerrigan believes in something and understands how to garner support. If this idea is unpopular, you sure don't gain support by not talking about it. I wish more councilmembers talked publicly about issues before bringing them to a vote.

As for the actual issue, I'd like to know what percentage of households decline curbside service and whether their non-participation is a threat to the overall program. If curbside service is significantly impacted, then yes, I support universal service. The alternative is far too dangerous a prospect.

At 1:44 PM, Blogger Jeff said...

Good points, anon. I agree with your underlying premise that collective participation is good for the community. I always use the immunization analogy for this concept. Some people can choose to not immunize their children, as long as enough do. We can tolerate a level of eccentric dissent, but we have to have an effective amount of buy in or the program fails.

Universal collection my help alleviate the dumping of household garbage in business/public receptacles, but it won't fix the dumping of appliances, tires, TV's etc. I think for these items, we need a redeemable deposit rather than a fee to dump.

At 8:16 AM, Blogger Fred said...

An easy fix for business dumpsters is simply to lock them. I believe most have chains that can wrap around the lid and then locked.

Not sure a reedemabel deposit would really work well for larger stuff as many just want to dump an old TV and wouldn't go thru the hassle of getting some deposit.

I do wish there was some way to catch some of these illegal dumpers, though, especially people abandoning cars. Don't know how that could be taken care of without making life miserable for anyone who owns a car.

And for Anon: I don't know how many people decline garbage pickup. I did myself, for years, and just started again early this year. I think it's a bargain and affordable by anyone, especially households that recycle. Seems to me City Garbage has gotten along fine the thirty plus years I've lived up here with voluntary service.

While some suggest universal service would help with litter and illegal dumping, I doubt it would have much effect. You could put a 20 yard dumpster in front of some people's houses and they'd still have trash all over.

At 11:30 AM, Blogger Jeff said...

If people dumped a redeemable item, there'd be incentive for someone else to turn it in for the deposit. I'd pick up a tv off the side of the road and take it in for $15 or so.


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