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Port St. Lucie deploys city workers to help alleviate trash pickup delays

Posted at 9:12 AM, Feb 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-28 09:12:12-05

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Some much needed relief is on the way for Port St. Lucie residents waiting on trash pickup.

For months, residents have been experiencing delays with Waste Pro, the city's contractor for garbage pickup.

Port St. Lucie city leaders have announced that city workers will now be helping to pick up yard waste to help alleviate headaches.

Waste Pro will focus solely on picking up garbage.

"We're repurposing the work of other city employees who generally provide manual labor type work, activities in our public works departments, and utilities, and parks and rec, and we're putting them on the streets to help pick up some of the yard waste that has been sitting on the ground for weeks," said Carmen Capezzuto, Director of Neighborhood Services.

Capezzuto said residents have been filing roughly 150 complaints per day about trash pickup for the last several months.

Waste Pro officials said staffing shortages are to blame for the delayed response.

Capezzuto said contractors will be hired to fill the void of city workers now picking up yard waste.

The payment for those contractors will be deducted from the city's payment to Waste Pro.

"Residents will see city trucks out there, whether they are pick-up trucks, dump trucks, all city equipment is being used in this effort, so this is a supplemental effort to what Waste Pro is doing," said Capezzuto.

City crews should be able to complete a sweep through the city in about two weeks time, according to Capezzuto.

Capezzuto said the city is also expanding the days and hours of its free collection site where residents can bring yard waste and bulky items.

The site is located at the corner of Crosstown Pkwy and Cameo Blvd and now open seven days a week from 7:30 a.m. until 6:30 p.m.

Residents wishing to make drop offs are limited to two cubic yards in size, which is about the size of a large refrigerator.