Citizens, landlords should adhere to city ordinance to help keep streets garbage free

Published 7:43 pm Monday, February 6, 2017

It is no secret that Selma has a garbage problem. Just over a year ago Sea Coast Disposal took over garbage collection for the city after Advanced Disposal decided not to renew its contract.

When Sea Coast started, 75 percent of the city’s residents signed up for service like they were supposed to.

Since then Sea Coast started collecting garbage here, they have experience some of the same issues that led to Advanced Disposal leaving Selma — people not paying their bills and people not even bothering to register for garbage service.

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It has gotten so bad that Mayor Darrio Melton recently said during a city council work session that it is getting so bad that Sea Coast is on the “verge of not being able to collect.”

We encourage everyone that has not signed up for garbage service to do so. We also encourage anyone that has stopped to start paying for their service. The city does not want to end up in the same boat it was in when Advanced Disposal left town.

The city recently started trying to get landlords to cooperate as well, airing a public service announcement with the city’s ordinance and putting up notices.

Unfortunately, that effort didn’t do so well. Sean VanDiver, the city’s public works director, said only a few property owners came to the office to verify their properties and that the tenants that rent them are signed up for garbage service.

VanDiver said there are still plenty of landlords out there that have not notified the city, and should expect to see the city moving ahead in enforcing its ordinance that requires landlords to verify garbage service with tenants.

That means landlords that didn’t abide by the ordinance should expect to see a citation soon that could include a fine from $50 to $200.

It is unfortunate that the city’s garbage situation has gotten to this point. We encourage people to follow the law and in doing so, help the city become a better place. No garbage service leads to illegal dumping, and that leads to garbage being where it doesn’t belong.

Anyone that is not signed up for garbage service, or that has stopped paying their garbage bill, should do so.

We do not want the city to end up in the same situation it was in with Advanced Disposal.

We should all take pride in our city, and we should make an effort to make sure the streets of Selma stay clean.