Will Compactors Stymie Rat Banqueting?

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A family of Mil-tek compactors. Courtesy Mil-tek USA. Use of this photo does not constitute an endorsement.

Georgetown’s voracious rats should be worried. If neighborhood eateries take up the District’s offer of grants of up to $13,500 to purchase or lease commercial waste compactors, the rodents’ days of all-you-can-eat garbage-can buffets may be numbered.

The District extended the deadline for compactor grant applications until 2 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 15. “Businesses can apply for the grants individually or in partnerships,” explained Richard Livingstone, Ward 2 liaison in the mayor’s office of community relations and service, at the Sept. 6 Advisory Neighborhood Commission meeting.

The grants to offset compactor costs are funded by the Department of Public Works, administered by the Department of Small and Local Business Development and managed by a grants manager from the Coalition for Non-Profit Housing and Economic Development in partnership with the Department of Health’s Rat Riddance Initiative. The initiative offers business owners an impact metrics program that measures rodent activity and sanitation violations. More information is available here.

Besides reducing the number of trips that businesses and the District must make to haul waste, the grant program also seeks to reduce the likelihood of accidental pollution through spills or wind-blown debris. It also intends, of course, to reduce rodent activity near businesses — in other words, to bring an end to Georgetown’s complimentary rodent banquet services.

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