CHESAPEAKE, Va. - Chesapeake resident Tiffany Carlson has learned more about trash in the last 24 hours than she ever wanted to know.
“You basically have four cans like this,” Carlson told News 3’s Merris Badcock, pulling a 35 gallon trash can behind her. “You have to drag it down full of trash.”
Carlson said she became quickly educated in the business of trash after she received a notice from the city, telling her two of her trash cans were out of compliance.
“I thought it was kind of ridiculous, because my first thought is: what are we going to do with the trash cans that we have?” said Carlson. “They are not that old and they are perfectly good.'
The city says they cannot afford to buy trash cans for Carlson`s neighborhood, so residents have to buy their own.
Carlson has lived in her home for seven years, and says she was only just notified about trash can size and weight requirements.
City officials say they law is nothing new, but they have only recently started enforcing it.
“Basically, my trash cans are trash, because they do not meet the requirements,” said Carlson.
No matter where you live in Chesapeake, you are allowed to buy your own trash cans.
However, there is a size and weight limit: 35 gallons or less, under 65 pounds, and residents are only allowed up to four 35 gallon cans.
Many neighbors who spoke to News 3 said they did not know about the rule.
One family who owns a 50 gallon can in another townhome community say they have never gotten a notice about their trash can being too large.
In a statement, the city said “we have limitations on the size of trash cans allowed in townhome communities because they're dumped into rear loader trucks by hand.”
Carlson says her solution is simple: “We need city cans. I mean if you look, the community does not look nice.”
The city cans are 96 gallons. Carlson thinks if she has to pay for new cans, the city should buy her a standard 96 gallon can first, or let her keep her current cans – which are 45 gallons each.
Carlson has offered to raise the money to buy the cans herself, but she was told no by city officials.
City officials told News 3 they are planning on buying all residents trash cans, but it will take at least a few years.
Click here to find out more information on Chesapeake trash services.