Garbage cans return to Main Street in Port

Garbage cans return to Main Street in Port

Garbage cans are back on Main Street in Port Washington.

The Port Washington Business Improvement District board voted unanimously last Wednesday to purchase garbage cans for Main Street, a month after the Town of North Hempstead removed its cans at the request of the Port Washington Garbage District.

The BID has not yet decided how many cans will be purchased but they will take 10 to 12 weeks to arrive, Mariann Dalimonte, the BID executive director, said.

Ten temporary cans purchased by the organization were placed along Main Street on Tuesday.

The BID applied for a Town of North Hempstead Business and Tourism Development Corp. grant, but recently asked for the grant to be resubmitted to purchase more cans for Main Street, Dalimonte said.

“We will be definitely be purchasing 10 but if we get money it will increase the amount,” Dalimonte said. 

Once the new cans arrive, the temporary ones will be removed.

The garbage district will resume collection six days a week, Paul Oleksiw, a garbage district commissioner, said.

Oleksiw also serves as the president of the BID.

He said the cans will be carefully mapped out.

The cans were removed after the garbage district passed a resolution in December to stop emptying them and suggested they be removed to help combat the community’s litter problem, according to a letter from the district to the town.

About 50 cans were removed.

In a letter sent to the town on Dec. 29,  the district’s three commissioners said eliminating the garbage collection six times a week from the town-owned cans “will reduce tipping fees charged to the district.”

The decision to remove the cans was made to force business owners along Main Street to stop throwing personal garbage in them, the commissioners said in the letter. The commissioners said the cans filled up and people left garbage next to them.

The district was not contractually obligated to remove the garbage but did so out of courtesy to the town, the commissioners said in the letter.

The garbage district told residents that the town “allowed them to fall into disrepair making them unsightly and, in some cases, unusable.”

“The town accepted no responsibility for them,” the commissioners said in an email to residents. “The town has the workforce and owns garbage trucks. Our thought was that they would be able to empty them as often as needed and provide oversight of the mentioned problems and work directly with their own code enforcement.”

With Residents For a More Beautiful Port Washington rolling out a campaign to combat litter in the spring, Rick Krainin, a co-president of the community group, said he’s pleased the cans will be replaced.

“Litter is the number one complaint Residents receive,” he said. “It’s something we’re trying to tackle in a way the entire community can be involved. We know this will take active involvement in all stakeholders, from landlords and tenants to store workers and those of use who walk on Main Street.”

Residents’ litter campaign, PW Gives a Litter Bit, will focus on making Port Washington litter-free by using a three-step program: First by taking a pledge, then by becoming a volunteer and then by spreading the word.

“It takes a village and no one group alone can solve this problem,” Krainin said. “We are happy to see that the steps are being taking and it’s a start.”

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