Residents give thumbs down to biweekly Green Cart pick-ups

PORT HAWKESBURY: After receiving a lot of negative feedback over the summer, Port Hawkesbury Town Council will reconsider biweekly Green Cart pick-ups during the hottest months of the year.

During the regular monthly meeting of town council on Sept. 7, Mayor Brenda Chisholm-Beaton recommended that during budget deliberations, town staff investigate the cost of weekly pick-ups for the months of July and August.

The mayor said because of the heat and length between pick-ups, residents have encountered problems with insect infestations.

“I’ve actually had several conversations with citizens, and also informal conversations with a lot council members,” she said. “We’re certainly getting some negative feedback with regard to the Green Carts, with regard to the duration of that two week wait between pick-ups.”

The mayor said there were incidents where residents were “extremely frustrated.”

“Yes, there are some strategies around minimizing some of the challenges with the current model that we’re using now,” she said. “It would probably be best to look at how can we manage our discussion during our budget deliberations.”

Town councillors Hughie MacDougall, Mark MacIver and Jason Aucoin all said they received complaints, with Aucoin suggesting the town look beyond the months of July and August, since he started getting calls around the end of June.

“I think it goes to show the residents of Port Hawkesbury that town council is willing to make changes when it’s necessary, and we’re here to listen to the residents as well,” Aucoin said following the meeting.

While it is too late for this year, Chisholm-Beaton said the town will investigate how to improve the service so that as many people as possible participate.

“I think we should look at our options during our budget deliberations just to see what we can do to improve the Green Cart program for next year,” she added. “I think it’s very important that the Town of Port Hawkesbury has the majority, if not all of our residents, participating in the Green Cart program, because at the end of the day, it’s about diverting that waste in a way that is better for our environment, and leaves a better footprint on our environment as a town.”