DPW now offers clean-up kits to the community

DPW now offers clean-up kits to the community

PAWTUCKET – The Department of Public Works is now offering clean-up kits to City Council members, and community cleanup organizers can pick them up to help with their volunteer efforts and then return, says DPW Director David Clemente.

Clemente, answering Councilor Melissa DaRosa’s Aug. 25 request for information on a list of items the city can provide to help out with various neighborhood cleanups, said the kits recently became available. It has been longstanding practice that the DPW supports all organizations in the city in a partnership to enhance quality of life through greener and cleaner initiatives.

Groups interested in organizing cleanups should continue to reach out to their district council members and/or the administration, which will then coordinate with the DPW, said Clemente.

The kits now offered by the DPW include rakes, trash pickers, a shovel, a broom, and trash bags, along with a trash barrel.

Clemente said he understands DaRosa’s request, but it’s not as simple as just a checklist on what the DPW can and can’t do.

“Each event has different needs and requests, and it’s important to identify what they are so expectations can be understood and met,” he said.

It’s important to remember that events typically happen on weekends, when the DPW is operating with very limited personnel and at varied times, he said, and while employees are on duty, they have scheduled tasks to complete.

“It should be noted that proper lead time helps us better plan for these events,” he said.

Two recent cleanups included one organized by Councilor Mark Wildenhain of a wooded area in desperate need of being cleaned up, and two weekends ago, Councilor Clovis Gregor’s effort to help an organization clean up the area of Payne Park.

DaRosa’s initial request was in response to a memo from Zoning Director Bill Vieira on the council’s concerns over trash issues in the city. Regarding concerns over trash at the corner of Main Street and Magill Street, said Vieira last month, officials cited a business and owners of three other properties for environmental violations.

Litter control continues to be a more serious problem than ever in Pawtucket during the pandemic, with community cleanup volunteers such as Tyler McFeeters saying it’s becoming increasingly discouraging to clean up spots only to see them covered in trash again the next day.

The city has also taken other steps to try to address the situation, including installing high-capacity trash receptacles that allow increased proper disposal of trash and limit the chance for garbage to blow around.