HELENA — Walk out your front door and it’s pretty clear what season it is. The days are a little chillier, the colors are changing, and the leaves are falling. But after you pile up all the leaves in your yard, what then? Well, MTN spoke with the City of Helena to find out more.
“You know, be conscious with your neighbors and everyone else because we're just trying to get through the town as quickly as possible to get the leaves picked up before the white stuff starts dropping,” says Transportation Systems Director, David Knoepke.
Obviously, the leaves that fall into your own yard are your responsibility to take care of.
But the leaves that fall along the sidewalk and/or the boulevard patch of grass next to the street are the responsibility of the city. In fact, you can just put those leaves into the street for the city’s sweepers and leaf vac truck to pick up when it rolls through your neighborhood. But make sure it’s only those leaves and not more.
“If you blow out all your leaves and pile them up into a giant pile, neither our leaf vac or our equipment can pick that up. It's just too much for it,” says Knoepke.
After you put your leaves into piles, you can pack them into trash bags or in a tarp on a trailer and bring them to the city’s transfer station. Here they have an area specifically for leaves and grass that are eventually turned into compost.
The city asks that folks take care to separate out any sticks and branches from leaves that you take to the transfer station or rake to the road.
Taking these couple of steps and not putting your leaves in the trash not only helps the city but your neighbors, as well.
“We ask residents to please bring them here. Do not fill up your dumpsters, especially the 300 gallons. They're shared among your, all your neighbors. So, we ask that residents just be cognitive of that,” says Administrative Assistant for Solid Waste Division, Jake Larson.