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Village considers requiring garbage totes

In about a year's time, Kenmore residents could be required to put their trash out in Buffalo-style garbage totes.

The move would result from further revisions in the village's recently amended garbage laws and could be problematic since residents already have purchased the mandated covered trash containers.

But officials said the change is necessary to combat rodent infestation.

"We realize [changing to totes] is a problem, but it's the way to go and the way to address this rodent problem," said Trustee Patrick Mang. "It will be very beneficial to the village."

Mayor John W. Beaumont said he will propose mandated totes for residents if the village's finances are sound at the end of the fiscal year in the spring. It would cost the village $400,000 to buy 6,000 totes of varying sizes.

"If certain things turn in the right direction, I'll be going to the bond market and we'll be going to totes," Beaumont said.

The residential tote program could begin in spring 2007.

At the end of 2004, the village adopted garbage law amendments that required residents to store their garbage in cans with lids, and business owners and multiple dwelling buildings had to purchase totes from the village.

Beaumont said the totes "have been a smashing success" for the village's businesses and apartment buildings. He added that it increases the safety of workers who don't have to manually handle the containers.

Some residents opposed the move to totes since they already purchased the covered trash containers and have expressed resentment over the additional expense of a tote.

But Beaumont said the issue boils down to "do you want rats or do you want totes?"

Mang said during the first wave of changes the village couldn't afford to buy totes for residents, businesses and multiple dwellings, so the covered containers were required for residents. He added that the garbage law always called for trash containers, so many people already had the cans.

Beaumont said the village sold 90-gallon totes to business and apartment building owners for $55. He said the cost to residents could be around that amount, but less for smaller totes.

Beaumont added that if residents decide to sell their homes, their totes would be sold with their property.


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