HARKER HEIGHTS — City officials are asking residents in multifamily homes to help them tackle trash.

“We are not after people; we are trying to educate them and make them better stewards of our city,” said Mayor Rob Robinson of the city’s plan to educate residents before issuing citations. “We all have a personal responsibility to keep our city clean, whether we are property owners or renters.”

City Manager David Mitchell said the city will mail copies of the Heights trash ordinance next week to multifamily property owners and tenants to educate them about trash collection days and policies.

According to the trash ordinance, which was amended after it first became an issue in 2009, people residing in three-plexes or larger multifamily complexes are required to place their trash in a trash can and cannot place trash bags on the sidewalk.

“When trash bags are left out in the open, animals get into them and on a windy day, the trash gets swept into the streets and neighboring yards,” Mitchell said. “No one wants to see trash gathering on the periphery of properties.”

The ordinance states that trash receptacles can have a capacity of no less than 20 gallons and no more than 40 gallons and, once filled, cannot weigh more than 75 pounds. Bins also need to be properly labeled with the corresponding unit numbers and addresses. Lids also need to be properly affixed to the container to keep the trash contained until collected.

Waste Management, a solid waste contractor for Heights, added two additional trucks to residential and commercial hand-collected garbage routes to better serve Heights’ growing population.

Heights residents currently get trash pickup twice a week. Residents and commercial hand-collected customers north of U.S. Highway 190 have Wednesday and Saturday garbage collections; customers south of 190 and west of Verna Lee Boulevard or west of Stillhouse Lake Road have Monday and Thursday pick-ups and customers south of 190 and east of Verna Lee Boulevard or east of Stillhouse Lake Road have Tuesday and Friday garbage collections.

“Residents can put out their trash either the evening before or the morning of their scheduled collection,” Mitchell said, adding that the bins need to be removed from the curbs before the next day after the trash has been collected.

Contact Vanessa Lynch at vlynch@kdhnews.com or 254-501-7567.

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