The city council in Colorado Springs will hold two town halls to discuss an ordinance that would require residents on the west side of Interstate 25 to have bear-resistant trash containers.
The proposed ordinance was initiated by the Colorado Springs Bear Smart Task Force as a way to reduce bear activity in residential areas.
The city says there could be a financial impact to residents and business owners within the proposed "Bear Management Area Map." The map would encompass most areas within the city limits west of I-25.
Don Knight, the council member for district one, said a bear-resistant trash container could cost a couple hundred dollars depending on your HOA. However, he said the ordinance would not only keep people safe but also the local wildlife.
"By letting them rummaging our trash cans, we take away their fear of humans and we risk their life," Knight said.
If residents choose not to have a bear-resistant trash container, the ordinance would require them to take out their trash no earlier than 5 a.m. on the day of collection and returned to their home before 7 p.m. that same night.
Sid Nichols, a resident in Manitou Springs, said the latter option works best for him because it's free and is effective.
"They don't get into the trash real often because I don't put it out until the morning of trash delivery," Nichols said. "So I try not to give them an opportunity to get into it."
City leaders are now asking for public input during the two town halls on the following dates:
- August 22, 6 - 7:30 p.m. at Fire Station 18, 6830 Hadler View
- August 20, 6 - 7:30 p.m. at West Side Community Center, 1682 W Bijou Street