UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Ohio — Mayor Michael Dylan Brennan announced Friday, Sept. 30, the results of a survey in which residents were asked about their preferred method of garbage collection.
The survey, done in conjunction with the Cuyahoga County Solid Waste District (CCSWD), showed more than half of University Heights residents support a change to the current backyard collection method. . The alternative would be automated collection.
Brennan has long advocated moving to automated garbage collection, in which residents would bring provided containers to the curb for pickup. Brennan said automated collection would save the city money and be more efficient. He also said it would free up city service workers who now collect trash from residents’ backyards and bring it to the sidewalk for collection, to do other jobs around the city.
According to a city release, 58% of respondents want a new collection method, while 42% prefer the current system.
Resource Recycling Systems prepared the survey and analysis, which CCSWD commissioned and paid for.
Additionally, residents have expressed dissatisfaction with the current yard pickup system for recycling and garbage. Specifically, the release says residents are dissatisfied with the low rate of recycling, and 84% of residents who responded said recycling was “very” or “somewhat” important.
“I would rather have a big bin for recycling and not have to break it all down in a blue bag,” one University Heights resident said in his survey response.
“While 84% of residents think recycling is important, one in four residents say they don’t usually throw recyclables in blue bags with their trash,” Brennan said in the statement. “This tells us that even among some residents who think recycling is important, they are not participating in the current system. This is one more reason why we need to modernize and improve our collection method.
“Residents have been heard,” he said. “They want us to do better. And I agree.”
Brennan said her 2023 budget will reflect the will of the people. “It’s time we put people first, as well as the environment.
“Five in 10 residents would like to see curbside collection and cite improved recycling as the main reason, while four in 10 want no change. Many of these respondents indicated that they see no reason to change .
“Here at City Hall, we know that the way recyclables are handled has changed. Blue bags are no longer accepted by processors. This may not be obvious to some of our residents as the city has so far accepted their recycling in blue bags.
Brennan added: “We have known for some time as a municipal government what we need to do locally to adapt to a changing world. The good news is that at least half of our residents are ready to embrace change. And the survey shows us that we have work to do with the four in 10 residents who still don’t understand why we need to change.
“As we make changes, we will educate our residents not only about better recycling, but also why we are making changes in the first place,” Brennan said.
The survey was conducted from August 15 to September 11. It was not stated in the city’s statement how many residents responded to the survey.
In mid-August, the city council heard the results of a poll supported by the council, but not by Brennan. Brennan didn’t like the fact that costs weren’t mentioned in the council-backed survey, which was conducted by Baldwin Wallace University professor Thomas Sutton.
The council-backed survey drew responses from 1,476 residents to its 22 questions and showed different results than the CCSWD survey.
In this survey, 63.5% of respondents aged 50 and over said they were “very satisfied” and 10.7% “somewhat satisfied” with the current method of collection in the yard.
See more news from Sun Press here.