Shenandoah Sanitation

(Shenandoah) -- Shenandoah Sanitation officials are pleased with the response to last month's Citywide Cleanup Days.

By unanimous vote Tuesday night, the Shenandoah City Council approved a report on this year's event, held May 13th-15th, and to pay the expenses incurred by Shenandoah Sanitation. Dave Riley, the company's operations manager, says not having cleanup activities last year due to COVID-19 impacted the amount of materials collected this year. For example, more than 152 tons of trash and metal, alone were collected, and more than 24 tons of scrap metal were collected by workers at the dump, with a total of 45 rolloffs from the community following the event. Riley says Cleanup Days lured a steady stream of vehicles to the dump.

"On Thursday the 13th, we had a car count coming through the gate of 321 vehicles," said Riley. "On Friday, we had a car count of 292 vehicles. Saturday the 15th--264 vehicles, which totaled up to be 877 vehicles that we actually did the cleanup with. I want to thank the city employees on the help with that--tremendous help--and we appreciate that. We could not have done it oursevles."

Expenses charged to the city--including equipment and labor--totaled $16,230.64. Riley added the company is willing to work with the city to establish an identification system, making sure only local residents are taking advantage of future Cleanup Days.

"We've seen a lot of vehicles in there multiple times," he said. "I'm not saying they're taking advantage of it, or anything, but I just thought for the good of the community that we might be able to work something out with that."

Riley says more than one person is needed to check the locations of individuals hauling in materials during the event. One possible solution is to have users show a water bill or some sort of identification verifying their address.

"I'm not going to point any fingers, or anything like that," said Riley, "but I think there's some issues out there that the city is taking a hit on in the costs of the cleanup--and that shouldn't be."

Shenandoah Mayor Dick Hunt says the council must decide in the future whether they want Cleanup Days held annually or every two years. The mayor asked the discussion to be placed on a future council meeting agenda.

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