Letters to the Editor

Maintain convenient reasonably priced self haul — and keep trash off the road sides

Roadside trash collection means there will be roadside trash. Animals and wind will see to that. It also means there will be cans, bags, and some dumpsters out along the road, some cans for days before and/or after scheduled pickup, and dumpsters all the time.

So much for our “scenic byways.”

Because this is a small island, with Sutton Road near town, and we have relatively convenient self-haul hours, most of us can make our dump runs an easy add-on to a trip to town. It’s as if we have a civic improvement agreement — we haul our own trash so our roadsides aren’t lined with trash cans and bags, and are relatively free of litter (thanks also to Trashmasters and other volunteers).

Roadside trash collection will make things worse.

If self haul is really more expensive for the county, let’s try to find a way to make it more efficient and less expensive. Why not have a pre-paid or honor system for standard cans and bags and minimum loads? There’d be no reason for these vehicles to wait in line and cross the scales. (They don’t go to the tipping floor now.) Processing costs should be reduced. Wait times should be shorter.

If where you live can be served, at the house (not the road), by San Juan Sanitation, it probably makes sense to subscribe to their service. It’s pretty convenient, and it’s less expensive than paying the minimum charge at the transfer station.

Otherwise, let’s fix the problem and maintain convenient reasonably priced self haul — and keep trash off the road sides.

Please let the County Council know your views.

Allen Rosenberg
San Juan Island

Community Events, April 2014

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