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Carmen Orechio’s pollution solution

By David Wildstein, February 26 2018 3:36 pm

In 1971, Nutley Commissioner Carmen Orechio introduced New Jersey’s first pooper-scooper law requiring people clean up after their dogs.  Orechio introduced the ordinance after a constituent complained about the after-effects of a dog’s call of nature on his lawn.  The language was something like: “a dog may have a call of nature only in the street, off the curb.”

The proposed law required residents to carry a shovel and a plastic bag while walking their dogs.

Residents of Nutley have been anything but shy over the years, and more than 100 people showed up at the public hearing.

Orechio decided to sell his idea as an environmental issue.  That created two classic public comments.  One came from a man who said to Orechio: “You’re saying this creates a pollution problem.  I say it’s all manure.  Manure has been with us for over a thousand years and its good for the grass.”

Perhaps the best line of the night came from a teenager, who told Orechio: “The dog’s just doing his thing and who’s going to speak up for the dogs. Let’s get the big (pollution) offenders instead of pussy footing around with dogs.”

The Orechio act passed unanimously.

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