Seminole County Commissioners to discuss bear proof trash cans

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Seminole County Commissioners are meeting with Florida Fish and Wildlife officials to talk about a way to cut down bear encounters Tuesday.
 
They're discussing a proposal that would require thousands of people to use bear-resistant trash cans.
 
The Wingfield North neighborhood along Markham Woods Road required  residents to use the lock-top "bear-resistant" trash cans- back in 2014.
 
They can cost anywhere between $150-$180 each and it could become a requirement with a 3.5 million dollar price tag for all residents here in Seminole county west of I-4.
 
An estimated 23,000 homeowners would qualify for the replacement cans.
 
Since January 2008 there have been more than 6,000 bear-nuisance complaints in this area of Seminole County. 
 
The FWC believes it's because bears wander over from the state forest in search of easily accessible food in trash cans. 
 
Commissioner Lee Constantine wants the county to use money from their Solid Waste Trust Fund to help pay for 25,000 bear resistant trash cans but not everyone is on board. 
 
Commissioner Constantine says the Wekiva River Basin is Florida's epicenter for close calls between people and bears.  
 
Commissioner Constantine biggest opponent is Commission Chair Brenda Carey.  She represents the area where most of the bear problems are reported.  Carrey says the county already offers residents the chance to rent or buy bear proof trash cans and she thinks informing residents where not to leave trash is the more cost effective alternative.
 
FWC says the lock-top trash bins have proved a very effective in reducing the number of bears wandering into neighborhoods over the long term
 
Tuesday’s commission meeting with the FWC is open to the public at 1:30 p.m. at the County Services building in Sanford.
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