NEW CASTLE Council gives a 3rd try to a ban on burning

Residents for and against the burning ban are contacting council members.
NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- The proposed ban on burning just won't go away.
City council voted down the proposal that would eliminate the burning of paper and cardboard on Saturdays, only to reintroduce a duplicate ordinance just seconds later.
City Solicitor James Manolis explained that the first ordinance had not been property advertised and needed to be voted down. The new ordinance was advertised last week and should be ready for adoption at the Sept. 26 meeting, he said.
Thursday was council's third attempt at banning burning.
It was initially voted down by council a few years ago, but passed last year when reintroduced by Councilman Mark Elisco. The second attempt at the ban was ultimately foiled when Mayor Timothy Fulkerson vetoed the ban.
Elisco introduced the burning ban for a third time in August when Fulkerson indicated he'd had a change of heart and would not veto any ban on burning.
Seeking alternatives
Fulkerson said he has been looking for alternatives to burning and has established a paper recycling bin at the city fire station off of the Columbus Inner Belt to alleviate some of the burning.
Elisco again gave his support to the fourth proposed ban on burning at Thursday's council meeting.
"I'm going to introduce this for the fiftieth time," he said jokingly.
The burning debate among residents is ongoing.
Council received letters for and against the ban.
Donna McEwan asked council to not ban burning because it helps reduce the cost of rubbish for her by as much as 60 percent per year. McEwan wrote that she is homebound and unable to take her papers to the recycling bin.
But Jeanne and Robert Abernethy fully support the ban on burning. The wrote that it was unsightly, invasive, dangerous and unhealthy.
There appears to be a majority of council in favor of the ban with Elisco, Councilman Rick DeBlasio and Councilwoman Patricia May favoring it.
Council members John Russo and Christine Sands have said the oppose the ban, but seem to be tiring of the debate.
"I'm getting all burned out," Russo said.
He added that people can still burn papers legally in the city if they pay the $10 fee for a permit which is valid for two years. When the ban is officially passed, no new permits will be issued.

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