News Tribune

Peru bans spring leaf burning for 2022; Fall burning still allowed

Amendment was created to stop the burning of wet leaves

The Peru City Council amended its leaf burning ordinance as it will no longer allow spring leaf burning starting in 2022. This ban will be in effect from April 1 through May 31.

Open burning of leaves will be permitted from Oct 1 through Nov. 30 between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Burning will not be allowed on Sundays, Mondays and federally designated holidays.

All other burning regulations will remain unchanged under this amendment including that the burning must take place at least 20 feet from any structure, no burning within 48 hours of a half-inch rainfall and burning must take place on private property.

Mayor Ken Kolowski said this change is something he believes will benefit many residents of the city and will take some getting used to for some moving forward.

“You can still do your fire pits and things like that,” Kolowski said. “We’re eliminating the wet leaves and spring burning. Again, it’s a work in progress and if there’s hiccups or bumps along the way, a team will jump on it.”

Kolowski mentioned while much of this change will need to be done on a see-as-it-happens approach, the city may be willing to take out the leaf collection machines in the spring depending on manpower, availability and demand.

“That’s an option that we might have to do, we don’t know,” Kolowski said. “This will just make our community healthier, safer and I think overall it is a positive thing for the city of Peru.”

The announcement this change may be in the works came after the Oct 11 meeting as Kolowski asked for public input concerning the ordinance.

Since then many aldermen have fielded calls from residents asking for specifics on the proposed changes.

Alderman Jason Edgcomb mentioned during Monday’s meeting he wanted to make sure the residents were clearly told what the change will be as there seemed to be some confusion.

“I took a few phone calls on this from people that asked a lot of questions about it,” Edgcomb said. “I think that if we’re going to pass this we need to make sure everybody out there who does burn regularly and correctly does understand what their options are for not doing that now.”

The city will explore attaching the information on this change with the city bills, add it to the updated city calendar and promote the change over social media when spring draws near.