New fees approved for abandoned property

Courtesy photo/Grand Haven Department of Public WorksGrand Haven Department of Public Works employees recently picked up a grease disposal dumpster used by vendors during the Coast Guard Festival. The dumpster will be stored at the DPW garage and be subject to the new fee schedule.

Every so often, private property items get left around Grand Haven.

As a deterrent to abandoning property and to create consistency in charges, a proposed fee schedule adjustment was approved during last Monday's Grand Haven City Council meeting.

"This was perfect timing," said Grand Haven Department of Public Works Director Derek Gajdos, noting there wasn't a set fee in place for property picked up and stored at the DPW garage.

Fees for abandonded property will be applied to items such as dumpsters, portable toilets and large tents. Beach umbrellas, picnic baskets and other small items will continue to be turned into the lost and found, located at Grand Haven Public Safety, 525 Washington Ave.

"This is meant for substantial items that cause us grief," City Manager Pat McGinnis said during the Aug. 5 meeting.

McGinnis said when property is found and the owner is known, calls will be made to ask that items be collected. If items are not retrieved by the owner, DPW will have the property brought to their garage for storage and the new fees will start adding up.

With the approved adjustment, property owners would be charged $25 for impounded items, $10 per day for storage and all associated expenses with collecting and holding onto the abandoned property.

Gajdos said this new adjustment could recover some of the costs of retrieving and storing property occasionally left after different events.

Before upcoming events, Gajdos said vendors should be aware of the new fee adjustment. He hopes the new schedule acts as a safeguard to keep people from abandoning their property.

"We have impounded things and stored them for a year before they've been picked up," he said. "I hope we don't have to enforce this."

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