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Oregon coastal town talks trash, but gently

Jul 30, 2013


By The Associated Press

GEARHART — An Oregon coastal city with a lot of second homes and vacation rentals is trying to deal with a garbage problem the easy way, by nudging property owners to get regular collections.

Many don't, said Gearhart Mayor Dianne Widdop, which leaves visitors and others with few good choices.

“Some people will take the trash home with them, and others will dump it in someone else's trash can, or in one of the Dumpsters or in the downtown corridor, and it's just wrong, wrong, wrong,” she said.

So, the city has been sending out reminders to property owners that say the council decided not to pass an ordinance requiring trash pickups, the Daily Astorian reports. Instead, it says, city officials hope that property owners will do the right thing to clean up the town.

“Issues (include) garbage being left curbside for a week, creating blowing garbage and animal problems,” the notices say.

Just to the south, a bigger coastal city and tourist destination, Seaside, requires regular trash service.

“My feeling is I would rather it be a positive voice than just go straight to negative,” said Gearhart City Council member Joy Sigler. “I would like to see if people will respond appropriately.”

Besides reminding property owners of the options offered by the company that does the pickups, Gearhart is also testing out recycling receptacles downtown.

Widdop said the city would evaluate its efforts at the end of the summer, “asking people, how did you make out? Has the problem been lessened a bit, and if not, we'll address it.”

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Information from: The Daily Astorian, http://www.dailyastorian.com

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