HAZARD — Residents of Perry County, including the City of Vicco, will have a new utility bill that will cover both water and garbage starting this month.
“We started looking at the people who was signed up for garbage services, and who wasn’t. We started noticing a pretty good difference. We started thinking about a way to be able to increase it dramatically, without really going out there and writing everybody a citation. So we approached, the judge and I, the city and started talking to the mayor and the city manager,” said Todd Duff, the Solid Waste Coordinator and Code Enforcement Officer of Perry County.
Duff said that the City of Hazard already has a utility bill inside city limits, and that the city will bill out the utility bills for the county. It took several months for the legalities to come together, Duff said.
“We got all the agreements between the city, the county and Waste Connections, which is the franchise for the garbage collection, right now in the county, They all came to agreements and passed the ordinance,” said Duff.
Duff believes that having this new utility bill would help generate revenue for the county, and that the county would use this revenue to create projects aimed at cleaning the county up.
“We are going to get this county cleaned up. That is our main goal. That is our main focus through this whole thing. It is to get this county cleaned up, because it seems like we had a lot of trouble with trash and garbage,” he said.
Duff warned that the county will start holding people accountable for their trash, and he hopes this new utility bill will eliminate illegal dumping.
“We are going to hold people accountable for their actions, and make sure that they are signed up for garbage service and that they are not throwing their trash over the hill or in the creek. Not everybody is doing that, but we have had some issues in different places. This is going to eliminate that,” he said.
Since the county is taking steps to improve it’s image, Duff hopes that by promoting the image of a clean county will bring interest in from those who like outdoor activities.
“We are proud of where we are from and we want to promote and bring people in here to show them how beautiful our country side is. How beautiful Perry County is. There is so many different resources as far as hunting and fishing aspects as well. People who like to hike,” said Duff.
For those in the county who are illegally dumping, Duff leaves these parting words of warning for them.
“I want everybody to know this: We have three trail cameras right now, and we looking at possibly purchasing some more. I got one that automatic takes a picture to my email or to my phone. We are going to start setting these places up, like Crawford Mountain, down at the airport, also if we have any active open dumping, we are going to place them in these places and catch these people that are illegally dumping and throwing trash out of their windows. We are going to hold people accountable for that. We are going to start writing citations and we are going to start getting onto people for doing this. We are going to let everyone know we are not going to put up with it. We are proud of our county, and we want them to take pride from where they are from as well,” he said.
TJ Caudill can be reached at 606-436-5771 or on Twitter @HazardHerald.