Peru considers phasing out yard waste burning; seeks public input

Decisions to come as the city weighs its options

While no formal action has been taken, Peru officials have begun initial talks towards phasing out yard waste burning in the coming years.

The announcement came during Monday’s council meeting as Mayor Ken Kolowski said he has had conversations with those around the city as he sees action coming in the near future.

“We’ve been discussing a burn ban,” Kolowski said. “It’s just one of those things where it’s more me. I say spring burning is completely unnecessary because what are they burning? There’s nothing left. We have to have a plan, we can’t just cut it completely.”

The plans for the city are to limit burning in the spring of 2022, allow burning in the fall of 2022 and then move forward with the possibility to end all burning moving into 2023.

This ban would exclude fire pits within the city and would be enforced for all yard waste and leaf burning in Peru.

“We’re just in discussion with this right now and we’ll make an official announcement on this moving forward,” Kolowski said.

The idea of phasing out the burning came about to allow the city to get the necessary equipment for the undoubted increase of yard waste pickup that will follow.

“We’ll then have more people at the curb and we’re not quite equipped right now with the machinery that we have,” Kolowski said. “The plan is to invest.”

Kolowski said he has had talks with many individuals in the city who want to end the burning. Some families may be unable to open their windows, play outdoors and enjoy the weather because of family members with asthma or other respiratory conditions.

Kolowski mentioned official decisions are still to come in the following weeks as he is open to public opinion and input involving this issue.

The next City Council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 25, in the council chambers at Peru City Hall.

Jayce Eustice

Covering local government, breaking news and whatever is thrown at me for the La Salle News Tribune