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Toledo City Council talks “trash:” Issues with county recycling bins

May 7, 2014
By Allison Graham - The Chronicle ( , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

The City of Toledo is urging it's citizens to (as the Coasters once sang) "Take out the papers and the trash; yakety-yak, don't talk back." Just make sure you put that trash in the right place urges one Toledo resident, Mike Niewahner .

Niewahner has expressed concern at the past two Toledo council meetings over a reported rise in misplaced litter and trash. With recent high winds and inclement weather, trash from the city recycling dumpsters has found it's way into his yard. The problem at hand is that the dumpsters located in the 100 block of North West Street are filling too fast as more people are utilizing them.

Items such as computer monitors, lumber scraps, and old television sets that are not intended to be disposed of at the city recycling dumpsters, are being found there.

Article Photos

Garbage litters the ground near one of the recycling bins located on North West Street in Toledo in this photo taken on Friday, May 2. A residential neighbor to the site has raised concerns about the disposal of trash at the location. Chronicle/Allison Graham

Eric Werner, manager of the Tama County Landfill, said a contracted hauler empties the city recycling dumpsters on a weekly basis. This service is currently under contract through July 2014. At that time, more pick-ups could be added to the contract.

Jennifer Fencl, Environmental Service Director for East Central Iowa's Council of Government, spoke about several options to help with the town's trash issue.

Some options included curbside recycling and improved education for Toledo citizens on the benefits of recycling.

Marshalltown Power Plant

Ken Vinson, an Iowa Alliant Energy representative, presented to the council details of the new Marshalltown Power Plant. Initial groundwork for the new plant is scheduled to begin in late May or early June. An underground pipeline measuring twenty inches in diameter is planned to be installed from the Vienna township into Gladbrook, but will not reach into Tama County. With the permission from the council Vinson would like to refer workers to our city clerk for help in finding places to live. Workers such as plumbers, electricians, steamfitters, and construction workers will arrive sometime next year. They may stay anywhere from three months to the full duration of the build. It is anticipated that there will be anywhere from 350-450 workers that may be making an impact on the Toledo and Tama communities throughout all phases of the plant's construction.

It is estimated that the project will take 32 months with an estimated completion in the fall of 2016. Commission and testing will take place in the spring of 2017 with a commercial roll out to follow. The plant will run on natural gas rather than coal. This project represents nearly one billion dollars in investment funding.

I Don't Know Why You

Don't Take Me Downtown Anymore

Sue Micllef, a small town convert originally from Columbus, Ohio, is very passionate about Toledo, especially downtown Toledo and the revitalization of its buildings. Micleff owns the building that the Fueled business currently resides in. Micleff has a desire to keep downtown Toledo alive and well. She received a letter in February regarding her building however details of the letter were not discussed at the council meeting.

Micleff inspired the council to look into the idea of tax abatement for downtown building owners with the hopes of using the money saved from taxes to fix up deteriorating store fronts. Council members will be looking into this idea and invited Micleff to the next Tama County Economic Development Meeting.

In other business:

There was no change to the current janitorial contracts.

Mayor Svoboda read a thank you note from Jim Roan in regards to the use of dishes from the Reinig Center for the Supreme Court Justices meal.

Mark Zmolek, superintendent of Public Works, reported that the pool has been drained and put back together. Additionally, clean up and preparations are under way in the cemetery for Memorial Day. Zmolek also reported that new city employee Anne Blazek is settling into her job nicely and was recently trained on meter reading. Blazek started on Monday April 21.

Council Member Joe Boll will be doing some research on the Reinig Center bylaws regarding the requirement for a police officer to be present if alcohol is served. The council was in agreement.

Council Member Travis Mullen updated the council on the bandstand project. The total cost of the project is $7800. A grant for $5000 for the Tama County Community Foundation was submitted and $3000 was received. Mullen is working on further options for funding the remainder of the project.

Toledo resident Allen Alexander expressed concern about a neighbor's dog. Alexander feels the dog is being neglected. Police Chief Bob Kendall will be contacting Rick Cooper DVM for a welfare check on the dog.



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