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Final round? Tama's battle of recycling vs. garbage continues

March 24, 2014
By John Speer - Editor ( , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

"If the county wants to have them (recycling bins) move them to the county shop (Engineer's Office on East 5th Street) and let them hassle with the problem" -that was the reaction of what could be described as an exasperated Tama Mayor Dan Zimmerman in again reporting recycling site trouble to the city council Monday night.

Zimmerman said bags of garbage again turned up at the recycling bins which are located just north of the Tama Civic Center complex in downtown Tama. This time, mail in the garbage has been found bearing the names of three residents and the Police Department has been directed to file charges against each alleged offender, Zimmerman said.

Adding to the issue, Police Chief Jeff Filloon reported Monday night used tires have now been dropped at the collection point.

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Debris ranging from clothing and computer parts to styrofoam and a baby bottle was strewn about the Tama Recycling Bin Site on Tuesday morning, March 18. Mayor Dan Zimmerman has again called for action on the problem and suggested relocating the bins to Tama County property in Tama during Monday night’s council meeting.
News-Herald/John Speer

Disposal of garbage, household goods and other items not allowed has plagued the site for several years.

A couple of years ago fence was erected around three sides of the site, prompted by neighbors complaints of material blowing on to their property.

Public warnings about the violations have been issued and charges for illegal disposal have been filed at times. Better lighting of the area was installed this past winter and discussion of installation of a video camera to monitor the area has been discussed.

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This time, Public Works Director John Lloyd was directed to contact county officials to attempt to find a solution.

It is known the Tama County Solid Waste Commission supplies the recycling bins and pays for pick up of recyclable material on a contract basis. Cities across the county provide sites for the bins.

Business Loan Program Change

Tama's ongoing Commercial Business Revitalization Loan Program has had the boundaries it encompasses extended to include the entire city. Since its inception, the loans have only been available to downtown property owners in a TIFF District bordered along the south side of 5th Street from Hall Street to John Street where it jogs to 7th and John streets. On the south, the district extends to near the Iowa River.

Council members voted 4-0 to extend the loan availability throughout the city. Members Kenny McAdoo, Doug Ray, Crystal Kaufman and Steve Baier voted in favor. Member Mike Carnahan was absent.

City Attorney Dan Rathjen praised the program noting it had success in maintaining or revitalizing a number of downtown properties.

City Clerk Judy Welch said the program currently has about $75,000 available.

In other business:

The resignation of Tama Police Detective Kimberly Schwartz, a sergeant, was accepted effective March 21. Police Chief Filloon was authorized to advertise for a replacement on the five-member department.

discussion of reviving the East 5th Street improvement project was led by Mayor Zimmerman. he said the total cost if the street and infrastructure work was estimated at $2.2 million when first studied in 2011. He called upon the council to again consider the plan for funding.

approved a 28 E agreement with the Tama County Engineer's Office to provide bridge inspections during construction of the replacement 9th Street bridge at cost to be determined amount of time spent. Use of the county services saves money over hiring a private engineering firm for the work city officials have said.

voted to increase the charge for shutting off municipal water service for delinquent customers from $50 to $100 during regular business hours and from $100 to $00 after 4 p.m. and on weekends and holidays. The new fees will take effect on July 1.

took no action on a request from Ed Upah to remove on parking restrictions on a portion East 10th Street.

will ask Schoonover Tuckpointing Co., Vinton, to go over estimates for repairs to the city water treatment plant with Public Works Director Lloyd.

learned there is possible interest in purchasing the pocket park which is being developed on West 3rd street. The park is the location of the former Tama Meat and Provisions (Kupka's Meat Market) and a second business building which were razed. The city was deeded the properties.

passed a resolution setting rules for non-city employees to ride or operate city vehicles as part of the city handbook.



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