Trash scofflaw rules proposed

MOUNT DESERT — People illegally discarding trash at the town’s recycling facility at the highway department garage continues to be problem. So, town officials are proposing a new ordinance aimed at curbing it.

Residents will vote on the ordinance at the May 6 town meeting.

The town offers year-round roadside trash pickup. Some residents, particularly summer residents, hire commercial haulers to collect their trash.

The proposed ordinance would stipulate that those are the only two ways that waste can legally be disposed of within the town.

There are large metal trash containers at the highway garage. But they are only to be used by Mount Desert residents “in the event they happen to miss their regular curbside collection day,” said public works director Tony Smith.

But people who live outside the community are also leaving their garbage there illegally.

Cameras have been installed to monitor the bins and recycling area as well the entrances to the highway garage. If the proposed solid waste ordinance is approved at town meeting, anyone caught on camera disposing of materials illegally could be fined.

The ordinance also would require any commercial trash hauler operating in Mount Desert to obtain a license. This, selectmen said, would help ensure that solid waste is appropriately disposed of at EMR in Southwest Harbor, with which the town contracts to process waste material.

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Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]