To raise revenue, the city is exploring the idea of putting advertising on the side of residential trash bins.
They’d be like “mini-billboards” on both sides of the wheeled receptacles the city distributes to residents to toss their trash.
The idea, which a public works committee is looking into, hasn’t been fully explored and hasn’t received the blessing of any public officials. It remains unclear how much money could be generated if the city were to try to sell advertising space on garbage cans.
“We don’t have all the details on this,” Mayor Art Ward said Friday.
The committee exploring the concept is eyeing the possibility of selling advertising space on both sides of the rubbish collection barrels that have been distributed throughout the city for use with the automated trash trucks.
The Miscellaneous Matters Committee of the Public Works Board said it would like to hear particulars about the proposal before considering whether to proceed with it or not. Its recommendation would be sent to the public works panel.
While many cities around the country have sold advertising space on public waste barrels on downtown streets, the idea of selling advertising space on residential barrels is at least unusual.
Ward said the city agreed to investigate the concept after someone suggested the idea.
He said that officials “entertain ideas and suggestions from the public” and unless they’re way out there, they take seriously the responsibility to check into the proposals.
People need to know, he said, that if they come forward with concepts, city leaders will treat them respectfully and that the proposals “will be looked into and scrutinized” to see if the city can benefit from trying it.
“People have to understand that these are ideas that come forth” and that first-line subcommittees exist to consider them, the mayor said.
That an idea is explored doesn’t mean anything will ever come of it, Ward said.
“We’re not going to make a decision until we have all the details,” the mayor said.
At this point, he said, the committee is waiting for more information. He said he doesn’t when, or if, any more information will be offered by anyone.
The city is facing a fiscal crunch that has officials eyeing any proposals that could bring in revenue without socking taxpayers.
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