(BINGHAMTON, N.Y.) — Mayor Richard C. David on Monday announced a suspension of the City’s blue bag refuse collection requirements in response to the COVID-19 emergency, effective immediately.
Residents may now place household refuse in standard garbage bags for pickup through May 1 at no cost. Typically, residents must use blue City bags for refuse collection at the curb, which are sold at City Hall and local retailers.
The six-week suspension will provide an estimated $130,000 in direct financial relief to City residents.
“As Mayor, I will do everything within my authority to help residents and businesses during one of the most trying times in Binghamton’s history,” said Mayor David. “Suspending the blue bag requirement will be a significant financial cost to the City, but I’d rather that residents keep this money to help pay bills and make ends meet as businesses close and people are without jobs.”
Mayor David also announced a suspension of parking meter enforcement and code enforcement violations in non-emergency/public safety situations through May 1. Mayor David will review extending all measures at that time.
Parking tickets will still be issued for violations affecting road and pedestrian safety, including: parking in handicap spaces without a handicapped tag, blocking a fire hydrant, no parking violations, official vehicles only and blocking driveways.
Code Enforcement violations will still be issued for health and public safety violations.
Mayor David added that suspending parking meter enforcement means there will temporarily be free on-street parking, meaning residents and visitors no longer have to use parking kiosks.
Parking fees are also waived at the City-owned Collier Street surface parking lot and the Water Street and State Street parking garages. The City will also temporarily suspend booting vehicles for unpaid parking tickets. Pre-paid monthly parking payment plans will receive an automatic one month extension at no cost.
These new emergency orders were approved by the New York State Department of Health, per Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order 202.5 establishing review and approval of local emergency orders in response to COVID-19.
The City of Binghamton’s 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew implemented on March 17 is still in effect.
“We’ve built up the City’s fund balance for exactly this type of an emergency,” said Mayor David. “The City will deal with the budget ramifications after this public health crisis is over, and I will vigorously pursue assistance from the state and federal government, but I believe these actions are the right steps to take to help residents during the most significant government emergency of our lifetime. For now, our priority must be keeping everyone safe while also helping families and businesses stay afloat until they can get back on their feet.”
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