By Kellen Olshefski

SLN Staff

The City of Elkhorn Municipal Services and Utilities Committee is preparing to bring a leaf collection program to the full Common Council that it hopes will help to alleviate some concerns from previous years.

In a memo to the committee, City Administrator Sam Tapson said while a service delivery model focusing on “high volume” areas of the city and providing more pickups in those areas seemed like a good model, sharing program specifics with the public might be a little more difficult.

As such, Tapson brought forth a proposal from Advanced Disposal at the Aug. 22 meeting in which the company would collect daily for a full six weeks in the fall. With leaves being collected every other week previously, Tapson said the new service model would increase leaf collection by 100 percent.

Tapson said the City of Elkhorn would be split into five zones, each zone having collection on one day of the week, Monday through Friday.

“At this point, this may be the best we can offer,” he said. “Let’s see if it works better, because, as I said, the frequency of collection doubles … this way you don’t have to wait so long.”

Tapson also noted that in pulling together the service model, communication and back-up equipment was an important factor. In previous years, a lack of backup service has been a concern, according to Tapson.

In response to the concern, the company included in its proposal procedures that would be followed in the event of equipment malfunction. According to the proposal, a maintenance team would be sent to the site to rectify equipment issues and if a repair is not possible, backup equipment would be provided. The proposal states the city would be contacted upon notification of issues and would be provided with an operational plan addressing steps being taken to restore service within one hour.

In addition, Drivecams will be installed on Advanced Disposal trucks and video footage will be provided to the city at the end of the day.

“So, when we get that call that says somebody was missed, or a neighborhood was missed, we will have verification of whether or not Advanced (Disposal) was actually in the neighborhood,” Tapson said.

According to the proposal, leaves will need to be off the terrace and 12-inches away from the curbside by 7 a.m. on each zones day of service. Any overloaded areas, leaves or yard-waste would be called into Advanced Disposal’s dispatch, logged and communicated to the City of Elkhorn prior to the end of the business day.

Tapson said while details of the program will be layed out in information provided by the city in a newsletter and on its website, leaves should ideally be 18-inches off the curbside, making it easier for Advanced Disposal to collect.

“If they have it tucked back, it tends to pile onto the terrace and that creates a problem,” he said.

City Utilities Director John Murphy also clarified that Public Works Manager Neal Kolb’s group will also be following up with the street sweeper to help alleviate leaf concerns.

 

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