City passes pilot recycling program
Matthew Sous saw his first proposal as a city commissioner pass during the Aug. 10 meeting.
On a mission to make recycling accessible for more Mount Pleasant residents and students, Sous proposed the program, which passed along with several amendments to the city's solid waste ordinance.
"Passing this will be a huge step forward for the city of Mount Pleasant," Sous said. "I know the student community has wanted this."
The changes came out of a June work session, followed by more discussion during following meetings. City Manager Nancy Ridley said the changes will be put in place to keep neighborhoods clean. The program, which is detailed here, includes options for the bag and tag program, a one-year pilot program for recycling in certain areas and requirements for when trash containers need to be removed from curbs.
Commissioner Tony Kulick proposed a few small amendments before the commission passed the changes. Trash containers may be set out on curbs starting at 5 p.m. the night before collection day. They must be removed from the curb at midnight after collection and stored in a garage, side yard or back yard. Failure to comply with the ordinance, which will go into affect in 30 days, will result in fines.
Several residents spoke in support of the amendments, including Main Street resident Cindy Verway, who neighbors mostly students.
"One of my neighbors keeps their trash on the sidewalk all week long," she said. "I'm highly in support of these changes."
The commission received mostly positive feedback on the recycling program, which will be tested for one year between Bellows and High streets, between High Street and downtown and the area north of downtown. The city will supply recycle bins free of charge, but a $1.50 monthly fee will be instituted for every six people in a dwelling.
"You can get other bins as well," said Vice Mayor Rick Rautanen. "The blue bin has the city seal so collectors know which residences are included in the program."
The commission also set a public hearing for on proposed changes to the student-populated M2 district, which are detailed here. The hearing will take place at 7 p.m. Sept. 28 at City Hall.
Commissioners also reviewed the purpose of the city and Central Michigan University student liaison committee. Outlined in city documents, the purpose of the committee is to provide ongoing dialogue between students, residents, city and university officials. It also allows each party to suggest programs that could be implemented to enhance the relationships between students and residents. The commission voted to seek applicants for the committee, which should include:
- A city administrator.
- A CMU administrator.
- City public safety officer.
- Two city commissioners.
- Students who live in a residential neighborhood.
- Members of the Inter-Fraternity Council.
- Non-student neighborhood residents.
- A landlord.
- Code enforcement staff.
- A business representative.
- Members of the Panhellenic Council.
- CMU public safety officers.
- A representative from the Residence Hall Assembly.
The next city commission meeting will take place at 7 p.m. on Aug. 24 at City Hall.