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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Meeting to discuss garbage law changes

From staff reports

Kootenai County may have more ways to crack down on people who illegally dump garbage at county Dumpsters and businesses that don’t pay their disposal bills.

The Kootenai County Commission is having a public meeting today on proposed changes to solid waste laws.

The county has lost $100,000 from businesses that haven’t paid their disposal fees, Solid Waste Director Roger Saterfiel said.

The proposed change would allow the county to order private garbage haulers to stop picking up a business’ trash if its disposal bill is 60 days delinquent. Currently the county has no way to stop private haulers from picking up waste from businesses that aren’t paying their bills. The only way for the county to try to recoup the money is to turn them over to a bill collector, which Saterfiel said is rarely successful. One local company owes the county $40,000 for years of unpaid disposal fees.

Another proposed change would make it easier for the county to prosecute people who illegally dump appliances, hazardous waste, tires and other items at county disposal sites.

The third change would prevent rural residents from having to pay commercial disposal fees if they join together and put a neighborhood Dumpster on private property. Under the current rules, if residents opt to pay a private hauler to pick trash up at a community site they would have to pay a commercial rate.

The 2 p.m. hearing is at the Kootenai County Administration Building, 451 Government Way. For more information, call 446-1600.

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