Santa Clara City Staff Pushing to Get Rid of Annual Cleanup Campaign

By Robert Haugh

Tonight, the City Staff will hold another virtual meeting about the popular Santa Clara Annual Cleanup Campaign.

In the notices the City is sending out, they say they describe it as “aimed at identifying potential alternatives to the Annual Cleanup Campaign.” 

Councilwoman Karen Hardy has been advocating for getting rid of the popular Santa Clara practice for the last four years.

City staff says they’ve “reviewed other bulky item collection services for residential customers in neighboring jurisdictions and will present key findings, a list of potential alternatives, and associated elements of each alternative.” 

A few residents who participated in earlier virtual discussions said that City staff were not interested in keeping a practice that residents like. 

Some people think they’re getting pressure from an elected official. 

Here’s the information if you want to dial in:

Monday, April 25 at 6:00 PM

Meeting access:

Meeting ID: 811 7773 9595

Phone: 669-900-6833 or 888-475-4499 (Toll Free)


  1. On the PowerPoint presentation t listed the email address of for public comments until May 6th.
    Send an email urging the preservation of our Clean up Campaign. None of the alternatives that they gave were very good. Our city will look like parts of San Jose if our elected representatives choose to do away with the CUC.

    • Man, i was on that call and appreciate that the ppt showed some alternatives. City needs this program and at least the city is trying to make it better.

  2. We love the clean up! We don’t use it every year but it is something I’ve seen all my 70 yrs in Santa Clara. I believe it helps the city otherwise we might end up like other cities where people just drop off furniture etc on the roadside.

  3. City clean up is a very effective way for residents to repurpose usable items they no longer want or need. At least 75% of the items we put on the curb are gone by Sunday evening. I’ve picked up a few things that I used many times. DON’T eliminate it! Yes, some people abuse the guidelines, but I think they are in the minority.
    I wonder if this idea is based on cost savings to the city – even though we pay for the clean up as part of our utility bill.

  4. Karen must be falling asleep at the wheel again.
    Not listening to what’s going on.
    Time to wake up and smell coffee, Karen!

  5. It’s become too much of a blight for the city, and enforcement of rules is fairly non existent. The annual clean up lets residents have too much freedom in throwing everything to the landfills. We need to be more climate and eco conscious, and yes that means people should try to reuse more and throw away less.

    • Way more stuff is recycled and reused through this program than any alternative. Usually only about a third of what we set out is left unclaimed. In the end, it is way more eco-friendly than pretending like you are going to change people’s behavior. We don’t need virtue signaling out of pols or trolls – we need the clean up campaign. We also enjoy setting out some gently used children’s toys that our kids have grown out of so that they go directly to families that will use them (for free).

    • I’m not sure how long “Resident” has lived in Santa Clara or if they have used clean up. As a long time resident (and observer and user of the clean up), I know for a fact that every year when I’ve set items out, at least 50% (and often much more) of my pile disappears long before the city trucks come to do collecting. This service is a living embodiment of recycling and reusing, and should not be eliminated. To do so would not only deprive us of a great service, but would make it extremely difficult for many of us to dispose of items – especially those who do not have means to take things to the dump.

    • 10 year resident. Participated many times. While it’s great that 50% of the things you set out get picked up, why not host a garage sale instead? In fact, I’m pretty sure the city-wide garage sale is intended for residents to thin out their items prior to the annual clean up anyway. I’m not a fan of inviting tons of outsiders to scavenge and make a mess of the piles, which as been becoming a worse problem. For those who don’t have means to take items to a dump, I think the concept of residents being eligible for one or two large item pick ups per year would solve that problem.

  6. Hardy complained about split carts and changed her mind after election. Flip flopper. Give her enough time and see how she flips on this after Jed tells her what to do.

  7. We listened to a previous call that the city organized. They reported that 80-90% of residents use this service. Surprising that they would want to get rid of something so many people use. A lot of recycling is done after items are put out—what is one person’s junk is someone else’s treasure. One of the options that they suggested is that they would have drop off places for you to take your items to them. That probably be hard for a lot of people, especially senior citizens. This is one of the perks of living in Santa Clara. Don’t take it away.

    • Clean up is awesome. HOWEVER The equipment used for picking up rubbish destroys our sidewalks. THIS MAKES SANTA CLARA HAVE BROKEN SIDEWALKS AND LOOKS LOW CLASS

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