Village of Bridgeport Cans Cleanup

BRIDGEPORT — In a split vote, Bridgeport Village Council decided not to hold a door-to-door village cleanup as it has done in years past.

Councilman David Rice brought up the subject of a village cleanup during the village council meeting Tuesday. But shortly thereafter, council voted on a proposed $10 fee per household to cover the cost of the cleanup service.

Allen Blanchard and Ben Lenz, along with Rice, voted in favor of the fee. Marvin Husarik, Norma Teasdale and Joseph Lyle voted against it. Mayor David Smith broke the tie, voting against the measure.

As a result, the village cleanup will be canceled this year.

“I’ve been against it (the clean-up) since I’ve been on village council,” Smith said.

They mayor believes that the fee, which has been charged in previous years, is unfair to residents who do not participate in the cleanup. Husarik echoed the mayor’s sentiments.

But Lenz disagreed with the decision to stop the cleanup. He said he has been approached by multiple people who asked about the cleanup and when it would occur.

Lenz also said without a cleanup, he believes that vacant lots in the village will just become a “dumping ground.” Husarik said village ordinances already exist to keep residents from dumping randomly.

Rice had said the projected date for the cleanup would have been in early June. The cleanup would have involved the village renting several trucks to collect the trash at a rate of $155 per hour.

To help cover the cost of the trucks and disposal, Rice proposed adding $10 to the trash bills for village residents.

Smith said residents who need large trash hauled away can call the mayor’s office and arrange for it to be picked up. That service costs $50 plus a dumping fee, he said.

In other business, Michael Shaheen, village solicitor, swore in John Bumba, the village’s new chief of police. Bumba, who had previously served with the department as recently as December, is filling the position left open by Andrew Klotz. After serving as chief for eight years, Klotz left the department at the beginning of the month to take a job with the St. Clairsville Police Department. Bumba’s family assisted him by pinning on his chief’s insignia after he was sworn in. His swearing in is especially poignant as it takes place during National Police Appreciation Week.

“It’s an honor to be appointed as chief,” Bumba said. “I feel like this is where I started, and this is where I finish it out.”