Several people attended a meeting of Lehighton Borough Council on Monday and complained that their garbage hasn't been collected for over two weeks.
We've also received complaints regarding this.
The council indicated that the snow which has piled up everywhere is responsible for the mess. Frankly, that's not a good enough reason.
There's a possibility we'll be getting more accumulating snow this weekend, according to some weather forecasts. Does that mean the trash pickups will be delayed even more?
According to the reports we got from some Lehighton residents, most of the homes missed for the waste collection happened at dwellings in alleys where the garbage trucks couldn't navigate.
If the garbage trucks couldn't get through, it's unlikely a firetruck would have been able to get to the scene of an emergency. That's more dangerous than uncollected garbage.
Lehighton is no different than any other municipality in that it has alleys that are narrow. We haven't heard about these major garbage pickup delays in any other town but Lehighton.
The borough has had problems in the past with skunks and other vermin. Trash laying at curbside for long periods of town could potentially make this problem worse.
One thing Lehighton officials will have to do before next winter is think about adopting a snow plowing ordinance. It might mean odd-even parking. Certainly it will address parking in alleys during snowstorms.
Chances are cars parked in alleys prevent plows from doing a decent job of making adequate pathways. Presently the borough has no ordinance preventing this.
Lehighton residents deserve better. They pay monthly fees to have their garbage collected and expect weekly pickup. Although there could be circumstances which might interrupt the delivery, snow shouldn't hamper this service for a two-week period.
Borough officials are obligated to investigate what went wrong and do their best to assure this doesn't happen again.
Several years ago, there was an ice storm. Lehighton had a different garbage collector. Because the roads got icy, the trash collector delayed picking up recyclables for a day or two, citing safety issues.
The borough fined the trash collector for missing those residents.
At that time, the borough council reacted strongly to the situation.
This time, it looks like borough officials aren't reacting seriously enough.
By RON GOWER