- A deluge of Detroit homeowners are receiving $100 fines, often for the first time, for leaving trash cans curbside outside of the allowed time frame (from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m.) — as well as for other curbside pickup violations, as mandated by a city statute.
- While some violations were issued based on Department of Public Works inspections, many resulted from a surge in residents’ reports after a new garbage complaint option was added to the city’s new Improve Detroit app. The spike also follows changes in collection schedules that happened after the city experienced inconsistencies with trash pickup and entered a new contract, at which time collection days were established throughout Detroit’s neighborhoods.
- Enforcement will be relaxed for the present time as officials develop educational initiatives for homeowners, said Detroit Department of Public Works Ron Brundidge.
Reforms in systems are the way to achieve better efficiency and savings, as other municipalities, like Bloomington, IL, have done through changes in their collection schedules and related protocol. But large-scale change, especially preceding an adjustment period, can be confusing and disruptive.
"Trying to cut down on the blight, I applaud them for that. But the way they are going about it is wrong," said rental property owner Vanessa Kilgore to The Detroit News. "They should warn you that they are going to enforce this law. And, your first ticket shouldn’t be $100."
"Maybe we haven’t done as good of a job as we needed to do to make sure all of our residents were aware of what they were required to do or not required to do," Brundidge said. "From here, we are going to take a step back and go back to the policy where we issued a warning notice first."