The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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November 11, 2013

City officials pleased with large-item pickup

CLINTON — Despite the controversy and debate surrounding large-item pickup in Clinton, city crews have been pleased with how smoothly the process has unfolded.

“Pickup has been lighter than expected due to the 95-gallon container and enforcing the rules,” Grounds and Facilities Superintendent Tom Krogman said. “It’s been working real well actually.”

The pickup began Oct. 21, spanning the length of the city in just four weeks. According to Krogman, aside from the first week, the pick-up crews have only needed a day or two to complete the pickup in each section of the city.

“The first week people didn’t realize it was going on so we had to go back. That took a little longer,” Krogman said. “(Since), we’ve been averaging about a day and a half for pick up.”

City Administrator Jessica Kinser agreed the first week of the pickup displayed the most difficulty for the street crews but since then the process has unfolded relatively smoothly.

“Once we’re in an area we’re not coming back, so people have called about that, (otherwise) we haven’t heard much,” Kinser said. “I think with the limited time to advertise we didn’t have a lot of people participate. It’s gone much smoother than I expected.”

Concerns of whether the city would have the time and manpower to accomplish the large-item pickup haunted the City Council when making the final decision to offer the service, but since the process has started, Krogman said street crews have still been able to handle the daily workload.

“Crews vary by the week but I try to get about six guys out there,” Krogman said. “Since it’s been so light, though, we’ve been kind of able to keep up with some of the regular work.”

Another concern the council battled was whether people would follow the rules and guidelines specifically set to make the process easier or if the city would have trouble trying to enforce those.

“We planned for the worst, that there would be lots of stuff out,” Kinser said.

However, Krogman feels encouraged by what he has seen in the first three weeks of the pickup and said there have been little problems the street crews have had to deal with in that regard.

“Most people have been doing pretty good,” Krogman said. “We’ve only had a couple that we’ve had to tag so, as a whole, people are following the rules.”

The next large-item pickup could take place April 21 pending approval by the City Council, and Krogman is hoping that process will go as smoothly as the current pickup.

“We’ll just see what happens,” Krogman said.

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