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Household Trash: Proper Storage Between Collection Times

Proper Trash Storage

The Anne Arundel County Property Maintenance Code requires each owner and occupant of a property to provide a sufficient number of containers for the storage and disposal of trash between times of trash collection service. Improper storage of household trash can provide a source of food and a home for rodents and insects and may result in a health nuisance. The following steps must be taken to prevent the harborage of rodents and insects on a property and to protect the public health of a community.

The owners and occupants of a property are responsible for ensuring the following requirements are met until trash collection service occurs:

  • Approved Garbage Containers. A leak-proof container with a tight fitting lid is an approved container for the storage and disposal of trash and garbage between times of trash collection service. The owner and occupant of a property are responsible for providing a sufficient number of leak-proof, outside garbage containers with lids for the proper storage and disposal of household trash. There is a Trash Container Program which provides eligible County Residents with an approved trash container for the proper storage of household trash between times of collection service.
  • Size/Quantity. Garbage containers must be sufficient in size and must be provided in adequate number to prevent overflow of household trash between times of trash collection services.
  • Use of Plastic Trash Bags. Plastic trash bags are subject to breakage by birds, dogs, cats, rodents, raccoons and foxes. Plastic trash bags alone are not approved for the storage and disposal of household trash. A leak-proof plastic bag used in combination with approved garbage containers is the recommended method for the storage and disposal of household trash.     
  • Accumulation of Trash on a Property. The exterior property and premises must be maintained in a manner that is free from the accumulation of trash or garbage.
  • Discarded, Stored or Abandoned Appliances. The door(s) on refrigerators and similar equipment must be removed on discarded, stored or abandoned appliances.
  • Convenience Centers. The Millersville, Sudley Road and Glen Burnie Convenience Centers are approved garbage disposal facilities when household trash exceeds the capacity of your garbage container(s) or when the frequency of trash collection services may be insufficient. 
  • Recycling. Recycling significantly reduces your need for storage and disposal of household trash between times of trash collection service. Paper, plastic, metal and glass can be recycled using a County-issued yellow recycling container.
  • Infestation. Garbage containers can serve as breeding grounds for insects, flies and mosquitoes. All houses, sheds and other structures must be free from insect and rodent infestation. 

What constitutes a nuisance?

A nuisance is determined when the amount of trash and debris causes a rodent infestation on a property or in a community, or where the accumulation of garbage, trash or refuse causes a public health or safety concern. Enforcement is performed by the Anne Arundel County Department of Health on a complaint basis only.

How do I file a complaint?

Residents may file a complaint concerning improper storage or disposal of household trash or health or safety concerns due to the accumulation of garbage, trash or refuse by contacting the Department of Health at the number listed below. The complaint will be investigated within 10 business days. You may contact the Department of Health for an update of the inspection results and any enforcement actions.

Questions and complaints related to the trash collection services should be directed to the Department of Public Works’ Waste Management Services at the number listed below.

What if a homeowner or tenant fails to comply with the above requirements?

If a property owner or tenant fails to comply, the Department of Health may issue a warning, notice of violation or civil citation. Failure to comply with the proper storage and disposal of household trash constitutes a violation of the Anne Arundel County Property Maintenance Code, Section 15-4-302, and is subject to civil fines of $125 for the first violation, $500 for the second violation and $1,000 for the third or any subsequent violation. Citations may be issued for each violation and for each day the violation continues to exist.

Where can I obtain more information? 

Housing and Food Protection Services
Anne Arundel County Department of Health
3 Harry S. Truman Parkway
Annapolis, Maryland 21401
410-222-7364 

Waste Management Services
Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works
389 Burns Crossing Road
Severn, Maryland 21444
410-222-6100
www.aacounty.org/DPW/WasteManagement

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