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September 30, 2017

District of North Vancouver Organic Garbage

North Shore News

Dear Editor:

Thanks to the North Shore News for reporting on the September 18 council meeting, where only Councillors Bassam and Hanson supported Bassam's motion for the District to return to collecting Kraft paper bags with organic waste.

The District has hundreds of "street trees" on its boulevards (each assigned an inventory number). Those trees are dropping leaves now but due to cutbacks in organic pickup, many of those leaves will end up in the street, clogging storm drains. Coun. Bond suggests homeowners pay private contractors to haul the excess away. District staff falsely assert that problems exist only for the 2% of homeowners with 9,000 sq ft lots. Anyone with a maple or chestnut tree on their boulevard knows the mess they have to clean up each fall, and continuing into early spring with tens of thousands of nuisance maple "keys". Don't expect them to pay private haulers when the District's streets are available as a free alternative.

District staff claim that two organic carts are about equal in capacity to six paper lawn bags. That's not true unless you're measuring how much water the bins will hold. When placing the bags in the carts there's room for less than two full bags. Homeowners calling the District to ask when they will get a second cart are told there's a shortage. In its wisdom District council is willing to provide second carts free to homeowners but at a cost to the District of $100 each instead of picking up lawn bags when needed in the spring and fall to supplement just one cart.

Many have no place to store the carts out of sight, making some streets look like back lanes. That ugly step seems consistent with the District's apparent anti-gardening, anti-beautification position.

You can watch the September 18, 2017 District of North Vancouver Council debate on the motion beginning at the 1:20 point in: Organic Pickup