Proposed ordinance change may affect downtown trash handling code

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COLUMBIA - The Columbia City Council will discuss a proposed ordinance change Monday night that would affect the way trash is collected downtown. 

The Downtown Community Improvement District for Columbia proposed a change to Chapter 22 of the City Code that would require multi-family housing complexes and offices to create a plan to dispose of its own trash within the confines of its own property instead of using city property. 

It would also require new properties being built to have a specific area to collect its trash built into its blueprints.

John Ott is on the operations and economic development committee for the District. 

Ott said most buildings already have their own plan for disposing of trash in place. However, when a building does not have a plan, it causes problems downtown.

"It's created a burden on the downtown area," Ott said. "It creates extra trash blowing around."

Ott also said the city does not have enough resources to deal with all the trash itself. 

"The CID has a company called Block by Block that picks up trash," Ott said. "They have enough work to do without picking up people's trash that they set out."

Ott said the ordinance would help to create more space.

"The downtown area has worked hard not to put compactors in alleys," Ott said. "There is a lot of activity in them generally, and there's pedestrians in them, and there's some deliveries." Ott said. 

Ott said this ordinance change would make downtown Columbia more attractive.

"It's been working well already when the businesses do it," Ott said.