0

Newton recycling: Centers to be closed more days

COVINGTON - With new holidays added to the county employees' calendar, the folks at Keep Covington/Newton Beautiful want to make sure the community is aware that the landfill and neighborhood recycling centers will be closed some additional days.

Those who leave garbage outside the gates of those facilities on days they are closed will receive citations and could be fined up to $1,000.

"On usual, normal, everyday holidays, we have some people who leave garbage, particularly on the western side of the county, at Oak Hill and McGiboney (recycling centers) and citations are given," said KCNB Director Connie Waller. "We'd like to help people avoid that, so we're giving them pre-notice," of the additional closing dates.

The landfill and recycling centers will be closed six additional holidays, including two half-days, in keeping with the county schedule that was implemented for fiscal year 2010 to cut operating costs due to a budget shortfall.

"All county offices will be closed as part of the budget reduction plan from the Board of Commissioners. We regret we've had to reduce service to citizens, but it's necessary in these times for budget cuts," Waller said.

Garbage that is dumped outside the gates on days facilities are closed is searched by code enforcement officers for identifying information. Georgia law states that anything with a name, address or phone number can be used as evidence in court, and defendants have the burden of proving the garbage doesn't belong to them, Walter said.

Convicted violators will be guilty of a misdemeanor and fined up to $1,000.

The state solid waste ordinance provides for jail time as well, but that has yet to be enforced locally, Waller said.

Following the Memorial Day holiday, code enforcement issued 100 citations, including 10 to residents in Rockdale County, and more than 7,000 pounds of garbage was hauled from the McGiboney and Oak Hill recycling centers.

"If the gate is closed, the site is closed. If they leave garbage, they will be given a citation and fined up to $1,000, so please beware," Waller said.

Crystal Tatum can be reached at crystal.tatum@newtoncitizen.com.

SideBar: At a glance

The Newton County Landfill and Recycling Centers will be closed on the following days:

2009

· Monday - First day of school/ Sgt. John Newton Day

· Sept. 7 - Labor Day

· Nov. 11 - Veterans Day

· Nov. 26 - Thanksgiving

· Dec. 24 - Christmas Eve (Half day - open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.)

· Dec. 25 - Christmas

· Dec. 28 - Boxing Day

2010

· Jan. 1- New Year's Day

· Jan. 18 - Martin Luther King Day

· Feb. 15 - Washington's Birthday

· April 2 - Good Friday

· May 28 - Last day of school/ spring holiday (Half day - open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.)

· May 31 - Memorial Day