That cleanup week pile? It'll have to wait awhile.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the cities of Fargo, West Fargo, Moorhead and Dilworth have rescheduled the annual metro spring cleanup week to Sept. 14-18.
The city of Horace has rescheduled its cleanup day to Saturday, Sept. 19.
In addition, the annual electronic recycling event for Fargo residents has been rescheduled to Saturday, Sept 12.
The metro cleanup week is usually the first full week in May.
The decision to push it back to September was based on concerns about the coronavirus and the likely need even in May to continue with social distancing, said Terry Ludlum, solid waste director for the city of Fargo.
Ludlum said setting up cleanup week requires the efforts of about 125 city workers and about 50 day laborers, and he said social distancing wouldn't allow necessary work to take place.
In a normal year, a sort of mini cleanup week occurs in October, when fees are waived at the landfill for Fargo residents who bring in items to be discarded, Ludlum said. This year, he added, that abbreviated cleanup opportunity may happen in June or July.
According to Ludlum, Fargo picked up 1,949 tons of material during cleanup week in 2019, 6 tons more than the 1,943 tons picked up in 2018.
He said 1,459 tons were collected during cleanup week in 2010.
It isn't the first time cleanup week has had to be pushed back. A late spring flood in 2013 forced Moorhead to postpone it to the first week in June, while Fargo and West Fargo conducted their cleanup week in late September.