ROGERS COUNTY, Okla. - Some people in Rogers County may now have to pay and go to Tulsa to get rid of some of their trash after local free dumpsites were closed abruptly this week.
The sites were opened by district three Commissioner Kirt Thacker a few years ago, but Thacker lost the primary election this Tuesday and the sites closed the following day.
Commissioner Kirt Thacker is in office until the end of the year so FOX23 asked him why he decided to close the yards and why now.
“I was just extremely surprised when it shut down the day after the elections,” said Veronica Gregory, a Catoosa resident.
Gregory said she and her neighbors considered the Catoosa Public Dump site to be a valuable resource where they can, for free, take large waste and brush that the normal trash service doesn’t pick up.
“You had people dumping on the roads, in vacant cul-de-sacs… this helped tremendously,” said Gregory of the service.
Thacker opened the Catoosa, Inola and Claremore public dumpsites seven years ago as an extra service for the community.
Thacker did not want to speak with FOX23 on camera but explained he felt that if his constituents didn’t want him in office, he figured they didn’t like his programs either.
He also said he needs to save money in the budget for roadwork and for the next commissioner.
“He may have felt that that was his project and he was going to close it to see what his predecessor will do. But it was disappointing and disappoint that he lost the election,” said Elaine Brasuell, a Catoosa resident.
Brasuell voted for and supported Thacker, in the six months he has left in office she hopes Thacker may change his mind.
“They have it enough in the budget to maybe not open it seven days but open it a couple of days,” she said.
Thacker said he may consider having weekends where people can dump their large trash items.
The sites will still be open to brush. The remaining district three candidate Ron Burrows and Dell Davis say, if elected, they will take a look at the budget and if able, reopen the dump sites.