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Roanoke City leaf collection program to end

Roanoke City leaf collection program to end (Image 1) (Copyright by WSLS - All rights reserved)

ROANOKE (WSLS 10) - Officials with the City of Roanoke announced they'll be concluding their collection of bagged leaves on the week of Dec. 7, 2014. 

They say residents should put their bagged leaves at the curb on the same day as their paper recycling is normally picked up. There will be no bagged leaf collection in the alleys. 

City officials say regularly scheduled brush collection will occur only for large piles of brush (4'x4'x4') during leaf collection weeks. Small amounts of brush (less than 4'x4'x4') can be bagged for collection during bulk week (six-bag maximum) or placed within the Big Blue trash container during any collection week.

It is important to note, the city will only accept biodegradable paper leaf bags during leaf collection weeks. These bags are available at local hardware stores, home centers, and other retailers. There is no limit to the number of paper leaf bags residents may place at the curb for pickup.

City officials say it is still possible to use plastic bags to gather up fall leaves. However, leaves in plastic bags are disposed of with regular trash that goes to the landfill. This involves a disposal fee charged to the city, and also prevents these leaves from being turned into environmentally valuable compost. 

Since leaf disposal in plastic bags is not the city's preference, residents are limited to six bags per bulk collection week throughout the year.

Loose-leaf collection is not provided by the city. The only loose-leaf alternative is to stage raked leaves near the edge of the street for timely collection by a private contractor. Residents are encouraged to notify the city of their plans for contractor pickup by calling 853-2000, Option 1.

The Solid Waste Management Division reminds residents that there are alternatives to bagging leaves for collection by city crews. These include:

• Mulch mowing

• Composting

• Homeowner disposal at the Roanoke Valley Resource Authority • Use of private lawn maintenance services