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Elkhart neighbors may have to pick up the tab to have the city take out the trash

ELKHART, Ind. --  It is a fight over trash.  Those living in the City of Elkhart may have to pay the city to pick up their trash and those living in mobile home parks may be skipped over completely.

Right now it is free, but common council members are considering charging $11.35 per month.

The common council President made it very clear there would be no public comment at the meeting tonight, but ABC 57 did talk to those living in the city and no one was happy about it.

“Well I do not think it is right.  We pay taxes in the city.  They are picking up everybody else’s garbage.  Why can they not pick up our garbage," said Poplar mobile home park resident Matthew Jackson.

Jackson has lived at Poplar’s Mobile Home Park for four years,  In that time, the city has always pick up his garbage for free.

But if this new ordinance passes, poplar’s management will have to hire an independent company.

Jackson is worried Poplar’s new expense could trickle down to his wallet.

“I really cannot afford to have anyone raise my rent, especially with how expensive everything in this world is now," said Jackson.

But the City of Elkhart says not picking up the trash for mobile home parks will save them over $140,000 a year.

And it is not just those in mobile homes that are upset.

Homeowner Michael Baker says he does not want any more financial strain.

“With the way the economy is right now, how can you accrue anymore debt that you really do not need?  If you have been running a free service, isn’t there other ways they can cut back," said Baker.

So why the sudden charge for garbage pick-up?  ABC 57 called the mayor’s office and talked to his assistant.

He said that because of property taxes getting lowered the city no longer has the $2 million to continue this free service.

The next meeting to sound off on this new ordinance is Monday at 5:30 p.m.

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