EUGENE, Ore. — A viewer e-mailed us, frustrated about the leaf pickup situation in Eugene.
Stephen said, “How did we get into this situation where the city assumed responsibility for all of these leaves? Clogged storm drains, blocked bike lanes, slippery when wet. Just plain stupid!”
The city actually says it wishes people used the city pickup option as a last resort and turned more toward re-using their leaves or recycling them.
It’s required to clear the right of way, but with an average of 18,000 cubic yards to pick up a year, it says big piles are bound to stack up.
“I think as long as we can keep it out of the gutters and the water flowing but we need it picked up more frequent and they have yet to pick it up since the leaves started falling in our area so it’s like at what point are they eventually going to get to us,” said Eugene resident Matt Matheney.
Public works says it held over a number of its staff members to focus on the cleanup Tuesday. It says it has five different zones and a schedule on its website and it asks residents to only rake the leaves into the street the weekend before to the scheduled pickup.
Residents tell us the problem is they don’t want to wait. They think those leaves are a hazard.
“We try to reuse the leaves we have and if we put them in bags separating them out of bags and then trying to distribute them would not be a cost effective way of doing it,” said Eric Johnson, Eugene Public Works Manager.
The city says when you have this much rain in such a short amount of time, you are going to have flooding.
The city also wants to remind people to keep cars at least 15 feet from the piles because crews and equipment need plenty of room to collect the leaves.