Waynesboro Searches for Solutions to Trash Pickup Problems - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Waynesboro Searches for Solutions to Trash Pickup Problems

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People in Waynesboro are upset about piles of junk in the city and how they are being picked up. It involves a service known as knuckleboom, and people think it could be run a bit better.

For customers of the Waynesboro’s trash service, once a month - a knuckleboom truck is supposed to come by and collect larger items - like debris and furniture. But for a variety of reasons, the city has not been able to keep to that schedule or the enforcement of violations and leaders say the service is currently a one-man band.

Ricky Shiflett collects debris from the thousands of Waynesboro customers all week, but the other knuckleboom truck went out of commission months ago.

"It was just complaint after complaint about piles of trash,” said Frank Lucente, city councilor.

Lucente says he wants the program gone because it no longer runs efficiently.

"You can't pick up something without somebody having to pay for it. Whether it's you, or your neighbor, or everybody else on the service,” said Lucente.

Lucente says that when other city leaders asked for a new truck, which would take about $130,000 out of the trash reserve, he and others on City Council started questioning the entire arrangement.

"It's a service that the city provides that they haven't been providing very well. I had a pile of debris brush in front of my house for five, six months, and they never did pick it up so I had to hire somebody to come haul it away,” said Lucente.

City Manager Mike Hamp has a different take.

"We believe that it's feasible to continue the service, but better organized, reform the frequency of service, develop more specific policies related to the service in terms of the volume and types of materials that would be collected,” said Hamp.

Hamp says the loss of resources - equipment and manpower - plus heavy loads from storms, led to the problems. He also says that by changing the rules, service would improve.

Everybody agrees the heaps of trash sitting out are unsightly, but nobody has agreed yet on the route to fixing it.

"The whole council is in agreement that we don't want piles of trash sitting around the city for months on end," said Hamp. 

The city will hold another public hearing before making a final decision. That date has not been set yet.

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