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CLE delays new trash ticketing enforcement

Posted at 4:35 PM, Jan 04, 2016

With a new year comes a bit of a new tune from the city of Cleveland about your garbage collection.

NewsChannel 5 investigators first told you about a new ticketing policy that was supposed to go into effect Jan. 1, but there's a new plan now.

Margaret Cheney sparked our interest when she contacted us about a garbage violation ticket she got late last year. It all surrounded her bulk items.

Any waste or recyclables outside of the can is prohibited. The second week of each month is bulk item week, or you can call to set up another bulk item pick-up. However, only three items per pick-up are permitted.

We talked with City of Cleveland CEO Darnell Brown just weeks ago who said, “…come January 1st, everybody who violates will get a ticket."

But for people like Anita (who didn’t want to use her last name), the city put a lid on that idea, waiting now until Feb, 1 to start issuing tickets. "As a homeowner, we're unclear sometimes as to when bulk pick-up is,” said Anita.

"We wanted to give our customers a little more time to get acclimated," said Interim Waste Commissioner Paul Barnett. He explained the original deadline was dumped partly because there were multiple informational mailings about garbage that went out with water bills that ended up getting to customers a little later than the city anticipated.

So, the city thought it would be best to trash the ticket target date. "Our goal is to not give any citations, but somehow we've got to make sure people are following the rules," he told us.

Barnett said there have been about 2,400 warnings issued since around May of last year and 99 people have gotten tickets for second offenses. Cheney is one of them. She had a hearing and was denied, so she will be appealing that decision.

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