Let’s talk Trash!

Let’s talk Trash!

Many towns are facing issues with the rising cost of recycling and trash removal. In some towns where the trash is collected by the municipality they are even considering taking it away from some, but not all, citizens.

In the nearby Town of Hampton, if you are a Condominium owner, they want to stop collecting your trash. They will still continue to provide that service to other residential home owners, hotels, motels, businesses and restaurants. Only condominiums are being singled out to have their service taken away.

Fortunately Condominium owners have some protection under New Hampshire RSA 356-B, the Condominium Act.

RSA 356-B:4 states that each Condominium unit shall constitute for all purposes a separate parcel of real property, distinct from all other Condominium units. They are no different than any other residential homeowner that will continue to enjoy trash collection services provided by a town.

RSA 356-B:5 goes on to say that … no Condominium shall be treated differently by any zoning or land use ordinance which would permit a physically identical project or development under a different form of ownership

Other protections are offered under RSA 676:3 which protects a Condominium from being subject to an ordinance which is later passed after a site plan has already been approved and recorded. If your Condominium site plans makes no mention of trash, shows no locations for a dumpster and does not state who has the responsibility for trash removal it cannot be added later. The site plan is required to be signed by town officials before being recorded whereas the Condominium Declaration and By-Laws are not subject to town review or approval. The Attorney General’s office is the entity who reviews and approves those documents.

Under the Fair Housing Act, prohibited activities include providing different levels of service to different classes, i.e. residents in single family homes have the benefit of trash collection while denying that same service to residents in Condominiums. Imagine that the trash truck comes down your street and stops at your neighbors house and collects their trash because they live in a single family home. It then starts up and passes your condominium without collecting your trash and stops next door at the hotel or business to collect theirs. That just seems wrong!

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