Day-long clean up aimed to clear trash from neighborhoods
By Royal M. Hopper III, The Orange Leader
Sunday, April 18th, 2004
Chris Kelly never saw anything like the Orange County Trash-Off in his home state of New York mid thinks it is a fantastic idea.
“Grandmother left us some property on West Martin and this stuff was all over it,” Kelly said pointing to the third truckload of concrete blocks, tree slumps and assorted junk he had hauled to trash off-site at the Thomen Center Saturday.
The day-long county clean up is sponsored by Gateway Cities Proud with the help of city and county workers once or twice a year. Sites are set aside for residents to dispose of unwanted trash and debris their normal trash pickup will not handle. Special sites are set up for heavy trash like refrigerators, stoves and washers and dryers.
Newly arrived from the Empire State and faced with a massive clean up of inherited property Kelly was so impressed with the idea of setting aside one day to help county residents clean up their property he used his only day off to get in on the Trash-Off.
“At least this junk is not in my yard where my neighbors can see it,” Kelly said.
The Trash-Off idea is also new to Irene Shin who just moved to southeast Texas from the desert southwest.
Shin came to Orange County from New Mexico and discovered the previous occupant of her house had left a house full of junk and very old moldy carpet that needed to be gotten rid of.
She brought her load of carpet and foam rubber to the Garbage Bin at the Orange City Hall where the full-sized Waste Management Garbage truck had just been filled to the brim.
City of Orange maintenance worker Harvey Powell said the Thomen Center site had been busy all day and that the city crews had gone through six or seven of the 30 yard square industrial sized garbage disposal bins in just the first few hours of the Trash-Off.
Crews unloaded everything from refrigerators to basketball goals and old unused truck camper tops to an assortment of furniture. One County resident who declined to be named took advantage of the Trash-Off to empty the contents of a rent house the previous occupants had left when they moved out of the week before.
The Orange County Trash-Off is a close relative of the Texas Trash-Off, which was first, started in 1994 and has collected more than 14 million tons of trash statewide in that time information from the Texas Department of Transportation said