STAMFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork) — For decades, residents in Stamford, Connecticut, have raked leaves to the curb for collection. But that may change soon and it’s making for a possible autumn of anxiety.
For people like Dennis Diaz, the current system couldn’t be easier. Leaves drop from the huge tree in his front yard and he moves them to the curb for the city of Stamford to collect and haul away.READ MORE: MTA, Union Leaders Call For More NYPD Officers To Patrol Subways After Off-Duty Conductor Nearly Blinded By Attacker
“It’s made it nice and easy because I can just blow them right down, down to the street, it’s simple, rather than getting 30, 40 bags, you just blow them down to the street,” Diaz tells CBS2’s Tony Aiello.
Well, he may need a bigger stack of lawn bags.
The city’s Board of Representatives has told the mayor to cut $1.4 million from the budget.
Mayor David Martin says by requiring residents to bag leaves instead of piling them at the curb, he can save $200,000. He wants to require bagging for the fall season that starts next month.READ MORE: New Jersey Native Jovan Collazo Accused Of Hijacking School Bus At Gunpoint, Holding Elementary School Students Hostage In South Carolina
A few miles south on I-95 from Stamford is New Rochelle, New York, which started requiring bagged leaves about five years ago.
New Rochelle gave residents 10 months’ notice before implementing the program. That allowed the city to hold informational sessions for landscapers and repeatedly reach out to residents.
“That was the key, getting the political support for it, number one, because that’s always difficult, but advance notice, plenty of notice and information,” said New Rochelle City Manager Charles Strome.
In Stamford, critics say the bag plan lacks political and popular support.
“Loose leaf pickup is a huge burden on the city, there’s no argument there,” said Stamford city Rep. Nina Sherwood. “But we need to work together as opposed to just come up with this idea and get it out to the public in three months, it’s not, not fair.”MORE NEWS: NYPD Investigating Possible Hate Crime After Statue Of Polish Hero Father Jerzy Popiełuszko Is Vandalized
Mayor Martin’s office says it is still working on specifics, but does intend to require leaf bagging this fall. The Board of Representatives may consider a resolution, urging the mayor to hold off until next year.