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GARBAGE AND REFUSE COLLECTION 

Garbage, refuse and ashes are collected by private scavengers who are licensed by the Township of Teaneck under an annual license fee of $25.00. Their equipment is subject to inspection by the Department of Public Works, and the ordinance requires that wagons be covered. No limit is placed on the total number of scavengers.

At present all refuse is hauled to a dump adjacent to the Disposal Plant along the Hackensack River, south of Cedar Lane. The dump in the Glenwood Park section was closed about two years ago. The Hackensack River dump is being rapidly filled and a new location is being sought. The difficulty is to find one which will not be offensive to someone.

Scavengers are required to separate the garbage from the ashes and refuse, the former being placed in a large wooden hopper from which it is removed once a day by the operator of a pig farm in the southern part of the County. The Township derives no revenue from this garbage, although public bids were requested. It is probable that with present prices of pork the Township is fortunate in having the garbage thus disposed of without incurring any charges. Incidentally, a request to the property owners is made to the effect that they keep their garbage free from glass, paper, tin cans, razor blades, poisons and other materials liable to cause loss among the pigs to whom the garbage is fed. Should any quantity of this material enter the garbage it would become unfit for feeding to hogs, with a result that the, Township would be put to considerable expense in -finding a satisfactory way of disposing of it.

 At present there are 22 licensed scavengers operating.  The trucks used vary in size from one to two tons, and the average number of collections is three times a week.  There are no designated routes or sections of the Township to be served by each scavenger, some streets being served by as many as four or five different persons.  Naturally the process is wasteful.

While a dump is a dump and always will be, the Township dump is maintained so as to be the least possible nuisance.  The licensed collectors are required to furnish a dump keeper instead of having one provided by the Township as was formerly the case.  Water lines were laid to the dumps which has given much better control of fires.  Occasional fires which get beyond the limit of the laid line are immediately extinguished by the Fire Department, aided by the volunteers who are paid for this mean and nasty work.

As a result for more than a year past complaints concerning the operation of the dumps have been few as compared with those of previous years.  This is particularly true of the last town years during which the River dump has been operated under the very nose of Hackensack's business district, not more than a thousand feet away from Hackensack's largest bank.  Because of its location this dump has been subject to the supervision of the Hackensack authorities, but it has been so conducted that they have found no reason for complaint.

Still another appreciated improvement in the collection system was made in 1932 by requiring each of the collectors to equip his wagon with a metal body containing sliding covers.  This has almost eliminated the scattering of garbage and rubbish over the streets of the Township, and has lessened the escape of odors in hot weather.

Of course the present system of collection and disposal of the Township's refuse, lacking much of being ideal, is open to improvement.

During 1931, on the instruction of Council, the Township Manager made a comprehensive report on the possibility of establishing a municipal collection and incinerating system.  This report was printed in the daily papers at that time, so that perhaps no more than a general reference to the conclusions arrived at is now necessary.  In general these were to the effect that while municipal collection of garbage and its incineration did offer advantages and undoubtedly would be the ultimate method adopted, at present the financial condition of the Township did not make it advisable for the Township to assume the added burden.

Meanwhile, pending the future installation of such a system, it is believed that the operation of the present system has been made as nearly satisfactory as possible.

 

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