WALKER -- The Cass County Board on Tuesday approved the first reading of a change in the county solid waste ordinance to shift penalties for violating that ordinance from a list of county-set violation fees to state statute-set violation rates.
The board and environmental services department employees also discussed the difficulty they have found to define "junk," the most frequent violation report to that department.
Commissioner John Stranne said what he might consider junk on a person's property, the owner of that property might argue was his inventory for his business.
Commissioner Jim Demgen waved his arms wildly in various crossed motions to suggest randomly scattering materials may give the appearance of "junk" to neighbors more than neatly arranging items. Screening items from neighbors views could diminish complaints, he said.
Commissioner Jim Dowson suggested a court resolutions officer might ultimately solve the dilemma of defining what is or is not junk.
Environmental Service Director Paul Fairbanks obtained board approval for the county to pay half the $15,000 cost for an efficiency study of collecting, processing, storage and marketing costs for recycling operations at the county transfer station north of Pine River.
Fairbanks said, if the study produces what is expected, cost savings over time would repay the study costs. Minnesota Office of Environmental Services will pay the other half of study costs.
The board declined to participate in a multi-county appeal to the Federal Emergency Management Authority for coverage of damage to drainage ditches, because Cass has no known storm damaged drainage ditches.
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