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Jackson residents spend one final weekend bagging and dragging leaves around town

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio
Cars line up at one of the leaf drop off sites in the city of Jackson

Jackson residents are spending a final weekend dragging loads of leaves around town.

A court ruling against the city led to an unusual leaf pick up in Jackson.

Like in most suburban communities, homeowners in Jackson are used to raking leafs into large piles at the curb, where city workers scoop the leaves up and take them away.  But not this year.

The Michigan Court of Appeals ruled the storm water fee the city charged to pay for the leaf pick up was actually an illegal tax.

So this fall, Jackson homeowners have spent their weekends bagging leaves and taking them to a collection point. Or paying someone else to do it.

“I think the community as a whole has accepted where we stand and have taken on the challenge,” says Todd Knepper, the acting Public Works director in Jackson.

Not everyone is cooperating and Knepper says leaves are clogging parts of the city’s storm water system.

“This last weekend, we had a pretty good rainstorm and we did have some flooded streets,” says Knepper, “It is impacting the system some…but I don’t think it’s as bad as we thought it would be.”

He hopes to have some street sweepers hit the streets next week to clear the blockages.

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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