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Help Keep Leaves From Clogging Storm Drains and Traveling to Waterways

As you are cleaning up leaves in your yard for pick up, please remember to keep piles out of the street. Leaves deposited in the street can be washed into storm sewer inlets and carried into the stormwater system. Family-Raking-Leaves-for-Leaf-Vacuum

While most people do not normally think of yard waste as pollution, sending this material from our community to the river quickly overwhelms our waterways.  Yard waste placed in the street gets washed into our storm sewer system when it rains and this water travels untreated directly to our streams, and ultimately the Cedar River.  Leaves and other yard waste disposed of on sidewalks, curbs, or streets can:

• Clog storm drains, culverts, and pipes causing localized flooding.
• Carry pesticides, fertilizers, and other pollutants to our streams and rivers. 
• Cause nutrient pollution leading to oxygen depletion and potential fish kills. 

During the spring and fall the Solid Waste and Recycling Division offers a loose leaf vacuum collection service to help customers manage their leaves.  The leaf vacuum collection schedule can be found at www.CityofCR.com/leaf,  or calling 319-286-5897.  To participate in the leaf vacuum program, follow these simple rules: 

• Rake leaves in long rows on the grass parking area or edge of your yard parallel to the street, but keep leaves out of the street.  Leaves will not be collected from alleys. 
• Leave space between your leaves and objects like mailboxes, signs, poles, and trees. 
• Leaf piles should be free from brush and debris.  Sticks and twigs can be placed in the YARDY cart for collection.  Litter should be bagged and placed in your GARBY cart. 
• Do not park vehicles in front of your leaf rows; the truck will not be able to collect the leaves. 
• Consider wetting your leaves, it helps keep them in place before collection. 

In addition to the leaf vacuum service you can also use your YARDY cart and then extra Kraft paper lawn bags can be set out beside the YARDY cart, but only during the leaf vacuum time periods. 

We encourage citizens to report stormwater pollution by calling our 24-hour hotline at (319) 286-5826. 


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