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Snow In Alleys Preventing Garbage Collection, In Some Cases

Some city alleys are still daunting after last week's blizzard. (CBS)

Some city alleys are still daunting after last week’s blizzard. (CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — The snow isn’t the only thing that’s piling up in some Chicago neighborhoods. So is the garbage.

City and private crews were out Monday trying to collect the trash, CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports.

A lot of Chicago’s alleys are still buried in snow. But despite what the city said last week – that they won’t dig out alleys — crews are doing something about it.

Streets and Sanitation crews have been out clearing some alleys for trash collectors. It has helped in some cases, but it’s creating other issues, too.

Robert Lee, a driver for Lakeshore Waste Services, says he was running more than two hours behind Monday because of the lingering snow.

Another collector, Rob Stark, said in some cases he has had to forego garbage pickup and go on to the next alley.

“I can only do what I can do,” he said.

It’s an issue the city is tackling, too. Even though the Streets and Sanitation commissioner declared the city doesn’t plow alleys, it is using other equipment in many wards to clear a path. But in some cases, that has pushed snow up against garages that residents have already cleared themselves.

“It’s a necessary evil,” Ald. Walter Burnett said. “We have to do something to make the alleys passable for garbage trucks.”

North Side Ald. Helen Shiller agrees the city can’t just leave alleys impassable. But she believes some clarification on the Chicago’s alley-clearing policy may be needed.

“The city’s position on alleys is really unclear,” Shiller said.