Restaurants and all other businesses that process food in Maplewood Village must have their trash collected at least four times a week if they are not already doing so, as the town creates the mandate for public-health reasons.
The requirement, contained in an ordinance the Township Committee was scheduled to introduce Tuesday, also applies to apartment buildings in the Maplewood’s special improvement district, township Health Officer Robert D. Roe said in a July 11 phone interview.
Based on the proposal, collection will be Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, Roe said. If the governing body adopts the measure as expected, the law will be on the books by the mid-August. Violators will face fines as yet to be determined, Roe said.
At the moment, the town does not specify how many days per week trash must be collected, although Roe feels the time has come to do so. He said he has not been satisfied with the frequency of trash pickup, a problem that has led to “many” dumpsters “overflowing” with trash, resulting in spillage on the ground.
“It’s a health issue. The less garbage we can have sitting around, the better,” Township Committeewoman India R. Larrier said July 11.
Larrier, who is also the president of the Maplewood Board of Health, said she expected the ordinance would pass.
Julie Doran, executive director of the Maplewood Village Alliance, said July 11 that “generally speaking,” her organization’s board of directors supports increased trash pickup given that the number of food establishments in the village has increased. At the moment, there are 22 such businesses.
Roe touched on a similar point, saying there are “twice as many” restaurants” in that part of town than 15 years ago, observing that more customers means more garbage.
“I agree with” the ordinance, said Shawn McClure, co-owner of Freeman’s Fish Market also noting that there are more restaurants in the village these days.
“I’m all for it. It’s a good idea,” said Steve Filippazzo, owner of the Maple Leaf Diner, who has his garbage picked up three times a week.
Roe said the ordinance also will include two additional provisions: All dumpsters must be placed more than 10 feet away from the front and rear entrances to any restaurant; and dumpsters must have latching mechanisms to keep the lids closed.
In a separate ordinance, the town plans to require businesses townwide to clean the litter in the front and rear of their properties daily and, where applicable, on the sides and in driveways, Roe said. The town likely will make some allowance for the days when businesses are closed, he said.
“They just can’t sweep (the litter) into the curb. You have to physically pick it up and put it in a garbage can,” Roe said.