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Gates approve waste disposal ordinance

GATESVILLE – Clean-up your mess, or at least store it properly….that was the message sent here last week by the Gates County Board of Commissioners.

In a late item added to the commissioners’ agenda during their Sept. 8 meeting, the board voted in favor of a new county ordinance dealing with waste storage and disposal at construction sites.

Prior to taking a vote on the issue, the board heard from Gates County Chief Building Inspector Edgar Mitchell. He informed the commissioners of some, not all, construction sites in the county where waste debris was a problem.

To address that problem, Mitchell suggested the adoption of a new ordinance.

“I’d like to see us make it a requirement to have waste storage dumpsters at construction sites,” Mitchell said. “I would suggest that if you do approve this ordinance, let’s make the effective date one month from now in order to notify those with ongoing construction that they will need to have a debris dumpster on site.”

Those who have plans to begin construction will be notified of the new ordinance upon applying for building permits.

Commissioner Carlton Nickens motioned to approve the ordinance with an effective date of Oct. 8, 2008. The motion passed without objection.

The new Waste Storage and Disposal Ordinance is as follows:

The owner, builder or general contractor of any property or construction site shall remove or cause to be removed all solid waste from his or her property at least once each week, seven day period, that is unless the waste is stored in a container leased from the solid waste disposal company which is designed to provide for amounts of solid waste surpassing those normally accumulated within a week due to nature of the owner, builder or general contractor’s business on that property.

Garbage shall be stored in a container that is durable, rust resistant, nonabsorbent and easily cleaned. Each container shall be kept clean so that no odor or other nuisance condition exists.

Refuse shall be stored in a manner that will resist harborage to rodents and vermin and will not create a fire hazard.

No builder, owner or general contractor of a single family dwelling may leave outside the building or dwelling, in a place accessible to children, any abandoned or unattended freezer, refrigerator or other receptacle that has an airtight door without first removing the door.

All construction sites shall have an approved construction debris container on site with a means of covering openings to keep debris from falling or blowing out of the container. All construction debris shall be placed in the container at the end of each work day. Construction waste must be disposed of at disposal sites approved and permitted by the County.

Any person violating this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed $500 or imprisonment for not more than 30 days, or both. Each day’s violation shall be treated as a separate offense.

Any person who is found in violation of this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty of not to exceed $500, as provided in N.C.G.S. 153A-123. Each day’s violation shall be treated as a separate offense.