State law requires that grass and leaves be separated from household trash from April 1 until December 1, and the City reminds residents that burning leaves and yard waste is illegal within Lincoln City limits. Those convicted of open burning are subject to a maximum fine of $500 and up to six months in jail.
Chris Schroeder, supervisor of the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department (LLCHD) Air Quality Program, said that older adults and young children are especially sensitive to air pollution. "Burning creates a fire hazard and produces air pollution that can lead to health complications for people with asthma, lung disease, other respiratory conditions or heart disease," he said.
In Lincoln, separate collection of grass and leaves is provided by local waste haulers for a fee. Those who do not subscribe to the special collection have three options:
Grass and leaves must be placed in approved containers: paper yard waste bags available from retailers; 32-gallon containers with tight-fitting lids; or 95-gallon containers provided by waste haulers. The City does not allow yard waste in plastic bags at the compost facility because the bags do not decompose and cause litter problems. Residents can place their grass and leaves with their household trash from December 1 through March 31. Tree limbs, garden waste and weeds may be included with regular household garbage year-round, but some refuse haulers require that limbs be cut to certain lengths and bundled.
More information on recycling is available at 402-441-8215 and recycle.lincoln.ne.gov. More information on air quality regulations or open burning permits is available by contacting Schroeder at 402-441-6272 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about LLCHD, visit health.lincoln.ne.gov.