BY DAN HINER
ROAMING SHORES — The Roaming Shores Village Council held a special meeting on Tuesday night to address the village’s compost site. After a lengthy meeting, the council established new policies and procedures for the site.
The compost site, located on U.S. Route 6, allows for residents and contractors to dispose of leaves, grass clippings, roots, bushes and limbs or trees less than four inches in diameter. However, some violators have been identified after disposing of improper material.
The new policies passed 6-0 as an emergency order by the council members.
“[The compost site] is kind of on the honor system. Over the years it’s been abused,” Roaming Shores Village councilperson Ed Koziol said. “Big tree stumps in there, plastic bags ... big, round trees far beyond four inches in diameter. And it doesn’t get dumped back far enough.”
Roaming Shores handles the grinding of materials at the compost site. The cost will be roughly $13,000 this year after not grinding the waste last year. The cost can be spread out over two years.
The compost site will feature new locks and a key distribution system. The mayor’s office or a designee can issue a key after paperwork showing residency is returned to the mayor or a designee.
Registered contractors can get a daily pass or pay for a $500 yearly pass, which runs from January 1-December 31. This will allow access to keys for the site. Keys must be returned the day of distribution or on Monday if a key was given on Friday.
Failure to return key will result in a $50 penalty for each day it isn’t returned. Anyone who violates the ordinance, interferes will the cameras or assists in a violation will receive a first-degree misdemeanor and is subject to a maximum six months in jail and a potential $1,000 fine.
The Roaming Shores Police Department will also lock the facility after sunset, according to Koziol.
The compost site featured cameras to record those entering the facility, but the cameras died in the summer with over 5,000 unchecked images.
“We were not doing a good job of managing it at that point,” Koziol said. “Moving forward, some spot checking.”
Police were also unable to patrol the compost since it sat in Rome Township. Now the site has been annexed into Roaming Shores, allowing for police oversight.
The site will also feature solar-powered camera in the near future. The cameras were obtained through a Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council grant. Village administrator Duane Helms said the cameras could be in place as early as the end of the week.
“We’re pursuing another grant for a gate at the front entrance. This will be this coming year,” Koziol said. “Which will be operated by a key fob and will identify whoever owns that key fob similar to the gate that we have at the boat ramp.”
The council members acknowledged that most of the residents and contractors used the compost responsibly. But a few violators where responsible for the change in policy.
They also planned to sent messages through email and the village newsletter to publicize the changes as quickly as possible.
“By implementing these new procedures, that should enable us to spend less money and redeploy those financial resources elsewhere,” Village councilperson Sally B. Fell said.