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Green Debris Drop-Off Day is May 31

The ninth annual Green Debris Drop-off Day is scheduled from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sunday, May 31.

In past years, the free event has fallen on the first Saturday of May, which is also national Wildfire Community Preparedness Day. Due to the current health crisis and need for social distancing, city officials decided to make some changes.

The Valley View Transfer Station, 3000 N. Valley View Road, is closed Sundays, which will make it possible for attendees to practice social distancing measures.

Katie Gibble, Ashland fire adapted communities coordinator, said the drop-off day usually falls when the station is open, so it can get “quite crowded.”

This year residents must sign up online at ashland.or.us/cleanupday to participate. Only the first 200 residents to sign up will be allowed to drop off brush for free.

The sign up times are staggered to allow for proper social distancing. Only Ashland residents are permitted to sign up and must be ready to show ID when they arrive.

The drop-off day allows Ashland residents to dispose of green material from around their homes that could feed wildfires.

“Leaves and dense brush can hold wildfire embers and ignite, spreading flames closer to your home, while lower tree limbs and dense shrubs can carry fire from the ground into the canopy of trees, making the wildfire uncontrollable,” according to the press release.

A description of which materials are accepted for drop-off can be found at ashland.or.us/cleanupday.

The materials deposited at the station will be composted.

If residents do not wish to wait until the free drop-off day, they can drop green debris during regular hours Monday-Friday at the cost of $9.35 per cubic yard.

Gibble said Recology has seen more drop-offs than usual this spring because everyone is homebound and spending more time doing yard work.

“Fuels reduction is a thing you can do around your home to reduce wildfire fuel,” Gibble said, “especially in Ashland because we’re so close to each other. It influences the risk of affecting other folks as well. The more people doing individual work, the more benefit we’ll see as far as wildfire risk reduction in the community.”

For more information on how to prepare your home, see ashland.or.us/wildfireprep.

Email freelance writer Caitlin Fowlkes at caitlin.fowlkes@gmail.com.

courtesy photoVolunteers from Ashland’s Wildfire Safety Commission and Ashland’s Firewise Communities participate in the 2019 Green Debris Drop-Off Day.