Beginning this week, the Tahlequah Solid Waste Department will begin distributing brand-new garbage carts to residents.
In January, the City Council authorized the Solid Waste Department to proceed with plans to add automatic tippers on garbage trucks and provide residents with a wheeled garbage cart to use with that system.
"This will help keep Tahlequah cleaner and provide a safer, efficient and effective means of collection," said Solid Waste Superintendent Chris Armstrong. "The residents no longer have to worry about a dog ripping up a bag and dragging it down the streets."
Every household, along with most duplexes, within the city limits will receive a 95-gallon cart. Each cart has been assigned a serial number for the house address. The plan is to distribute 500 carts a day.
"We have to assemble these carts before they are sent out," Armstrong said. "The department will have at least three guys delivering carts every day. The reason for this approach is to minimize trash interruptions and-or delays."
The Solid Waste Department will start distributing the carts to households within the Bertha Parker Bypass, starting from Stick Ross Mountain Road and Fourth Street, then north toward Grand View Road.
Once a household has received a cart, the residents can begin using it. The cart must be at the curb or close to the roadway for collection. Refuse inside the 95-gallon cart is not required to be bagged, and the lid must be closed on collection day.
"Please be patient while the department is doing its best to distribute the carts as quickly and efficiently as possible," Armstrong said. "Families that need another cart can call the office and request one after everyone has received the first cart. This has been a long time coming. We have to grow as a department to grow with the city."
The Solid Waste Department plans to have all carts distributed to households by July 1. If a resident believes he or she needs another cart, arrangements can be made by calling the Solid Waste Department after July 1 at 918-456-8332.