By Holly Cook
Roeland Park residents will no longer be required to screen trash and recycle bins located in their backyard, following the city council’s Monday vote to relax screening restrictions.
Bins in the front of the home are still required to have adequate screening so that they are not visible from the street.
The updated ordinance includes an exception for the elderly or disabled and provides an amnesty period during inclement weather.
Acceptable trash screens include a lattice fence, chain-link fence with barrier weaving, or opaque structures. Shrubs, bushes or trees that do not shed their leaves are also considered acceptable screens.
Vehicles, flower pots, tarps and air conditioning units are not acceptable screens.
Residents violating the ordinance could face a $10 fine.
The original ordinance required bins screened in a manner so they are not visible from the street, regardless of whether they are located in the front or back of a home. Assistant City Administrator Jennifer Jones-Lacy said the existing code has been too stringent to enforce.
Jones-Lacy said the city regularly receives complaints about trash screening but that she did not expect that to change after the updated ordinance is implemented.
“I foresee us continuing to get complaints on a regular basis because one half of residents appear to feel one way while the other half appear to feel another way,” Jones-Lacy said.
Councilmember Michael Poppa moved to approve the amended ordinance and the motion was seconded by Councilmember Michael Rhoades. The council unanimously approved the motion.