The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

March 12, 2014

Conneaut wants indoor furniture to stay indoors

CONNEAUT — People who enjoy stretching out in their recliner after making a trip to the fridge for a cold one — all while on their open front porch — will have to modify that summertime pleasure.

City Council, at Monday’s regular meeting, unanimously approved legislation that makes it illegal to bring outdoors furniture and fixtures designed for indoor use. The new regulations includes such things as “couches and chairs (conventional or overstuffed), mattresses, box springs, water closets, sinks, cabinets, tables, game tables” and similar items, according to the legislation.

The rule pertains to yards and open-sided porches only. The items can be placed inside enclosed porches.

Council pushed for the amendment to the International Property Maintenance Code in an attempt to improve the appearance of the city. Indoor furniture kept outdoors make houses look tacky, members have said.

In related news, a new trash-hauling ordinance for the city was given its first reading at Monday’s meeting. The proposed law is a revamped version of an ordinance council shelved in 2013. That measure fell out of favor because it would have opened the door to one residential trash-hauler for the entire city, which became a sore point with some council members.

The proposed law sets standards for residential trash pickup and would hold collection companies to certain standards. For example, the measure would require companies to use leak-proof, packer-style vehicles — no pickup trucks with plywood walls — by March 1, 2016.

Most important to council, the proposal would give City Hall enforcement powers. Previously, the city health department regulated trash collection and trash haulers.

The proposal is expected to receive a full three readings before council acts, meaning a vote could come early next month. The proposed ordinance is also being reviewed by the city health department and the Ashtabula County Solid Waste District, said Ward 3 Councilwoman Deborah Newcomb.

Elsewhere:

• City Manager Tim Eggleston reminded residents to be ready to mow lawns and trim weeds this spring. The city begins enforcement of its tall grass/weeds ordinance on April 1, he said.

• Discussions on how to pay for the part-time code enforcement officer who will help enforce the new clean-up initiatives are expected to dominate next week’s council work session. The officer could also serve as a corrections officer in the police department, a move that would help keep patrolmen on the streets, proponents have said.

 

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