One Vermont town considers fining stores for abandoned shopping carts

One Vermont town considers fining stores for abandoned shopping carts

Photo by Jadon Barnes on Unsplash

RUTLAND CITY, Vt. (WCAX) – Rutland City is cracking down on abandoned shopping carts.

Mayor David Allaire says this is a longstanding issue in the area that comes and goes.

Many people who walk to Walmart and Price Chopper use carts to bring groceries home. But those carts end up along sidewalks and in the streets.

The two stores created a security system years ago but that system has broken down.

The Rutland City Board of Aldermen is looking into a new policy that when the city receives a complaint, the store is alerted and given three days to pick up the cart. If not, the city picks it up and the store is fined.

“I went out and took a look and they were all over the place, so I said, OK, one time we’re going to get the Department of Public Works to go out and collect carts. And we picked up 135 in one day. And that’s just an enormous amount of carts in one day. We dropped them back off in front of the businesses and said let’s see if we can try to find a way to address that,” Allaire said.

The Board of Aldermen has not yet set a price tag on the fine but it is being discussed.

Allaire says Price Chopper is willing to work with the city but they have had a tougher time dealing with Walmart.

Some people question why not fine those taking the carts, but Allaire says the city police department doesn’t need to be spending its time giving tickets to those trying to get groceries home and there is no expectation they would pay those fines.

By Olivia Lyons
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