ILLINOIS EPA: PUMPKINS ‘MUST BE MANAGED’ TO ‘PROTECT HUMAN HEALTH’

The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency requires cities to perform nine anal-retentive steps to manage and dispose Halloween pumpkins to “protect human health.” The agency wrote out a long list of steps cities are required to perform when hosting a “pumpkin collection event” for old jack-o’-lanterns, including filling out a Request for Approval of One-day Pumpkin Collection Event form, which is unavailable on the IEPA web site due to a server issue. “Pumpkins must be managed in a manner that protects against releases, prevents nuisances, and otherwise protects human health and the environment,” step four states. “Operation of the site should be done in a way that will minimize rainwater or snow from coming into contact with the stored pumpkins.” Here are the steps in full: 1. The event must be limited to the collection of pumpkins that were utilized for decorative purposes only and must not include garbage, food scraps or landscape waste. Signs should be posted at the site indicating that the collection is only for pumpkins. 2. Pumpkins must be accepted only from private individuals. Pumpkins must not be accepted from other persons, including, but not limited to, owners and operators of rented or leased residences where the pumpkins were used for decorative purposes, commercial haulers, and other commercial, industrial, agricultural, and government operations or entities. 3. Bags, boxes, candles, or any other type of solid waste must be separated from pumpkins prior to placement in pumpkin collection container and disposed of in accordance with all solid waste regulations. 4. Pumpkins must be managed in a manner that protects against releases, prevents nuisances, and otherwise protects human health and the environment. Operation of the site should be done in a way that will minimize rainwater or snow from coming into contact with the stored pumpkins. 5. Pumpkins should be collected on-site in a container, dumpster, truck trailer, or roll off box that is kept closed unless pumpkins are being placed in that unit. Pumpkins must also be properly secured to prevent public access to the pumpkins after collection, including, but not limited to, preventing access to the pumpkins during the event’s non-business hours. 6. Management of the pumpkins must be limited to the following: (i) acceptance of the pumpkins, (ii) temporary storage of the pumpkins before transfer off-site, and (iii) off-site transfer of the pumpkins or packaging for off-site transfer. 7. All pumpkins received at the collection event must be transferred off-site by the end of the day following the event. 8. All pumpkins must be transferred to an IEPA-permitted compost facility for composting. 9. The transfer and ultimate disposition of pumpkins received at the collection event must comply with the Agency’s approval, including all conditions contained in the approval. To say that this is a good example of an out-of-control government agency is a complete understatement. Continue reading

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