In another signal that governments are cutting back, the Lucas County Solid Waste Management District no longer will offer free yard-waste service for residents after Dec. 31.
"We are at the end of a five-year contract where residents have been able to take all their yard waste material, but once that expires, there may be a charge by Clean Wood and others," Jim Shaw, the county's sanitary engineer, said. "We went out to bid five years ago and set up as a contract that they would accept unlimited yard waste from residents in Lucas County.
The county district paid $372,000 for the final year of the contract.
Clean Wood Recycling has two locations: 6505 West Bancroft St. and 5340 Stickney Ave.
The charge for yard-waste disposal after Dec. 31 remains to be determined.
Dave Welch, Toledo's director of public service, said he is fearful people in the city will dump yard debris in vacant lots or alleys once the county no longer accepts such waste at no charge.
"If they have room in their [trash containers], they can throw it in there," Mr. Welch said.
Because the city has ceased unlimited trash pickup, residents
could find themselves without enough room for their rubbish if they beginning tossing things such as branches and grass clippings into the single city-provided trash container.
Seventy-five percent of the yard waste collected at Clean Wood Recycling through the free program has been from Toledoans, he said.
Mr. Shaw said the county district would try to get residents to consider alternatives, including mulching grass clippings rather than bagging them and having them hauled away to landfills.
Other cities and townships in the county have programs for yard waste, and some schedule specific days for Christmas-tree pickups.
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