Fall is here, and true to its name, we’ve already seen some leaves falling. Just a few days ago, we started experiencing some strong wind gusts in Santa Clarita Valley. Although the cool breeze is refreshing when temperatures are still nearing triple digits, it does create additional yard work for many of us. The leaves not only fall on our yards, they also find their way to our streets which may eventually find their way into our gutters and the storm drain system. The storm drain system is designed to move rain water from the streets quickly, to prevent flooding. If leaves are blocking or clogging the storm drains and we get heavy rain, it could potentially create a flooding hazard. In order to prevent this, the City provides street sweeping to help remove debris, such as leaves, from our streets. Street sweeping also helps reduce the flow of debris runoff entering our waterways and ocean. During the fall and winter seasons, the City of Santa Clarita increases the frequency of street sweeping throughout all areas of the City. Starting Monday, October 24, street sweeping will take place every week following trash pickup days between the hours of 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. to help keep streets and particularly gutters clean and free of falling leaves and debris. You can do your part to increase the effectiveness of the City wide street sweeping by removing vehicles from the street during scheduled street sweeping days. The sweeper won’t be able to do its job if there are cars or other objects in the street or at curb areas. I’d also like to encourage residents to keep the street clear of lawn and tree trimmings, trash, and debris, and remove portable basketball courts from the streets. As you start to do your own yard work, it is important that you do not pile or stack leaves in the street or in yards and leave them there. All leafy debris should be placed in the green waste container supplied by the trash service provider. This is to ensure that the street sweeping equipment does not become plugged, which would result in delays in the street sweeping service. Street sweeping will return to the monthly schedule in February of 2017. For more information on the Street Sweeping program or to find out your scheduled street sweeping days, please visit santa-clarita.com and search “street sweeping map,” or call the City’s Environmental Services Division at 661-286-4098. Frank Oviedo is the Assistant City Manager for the City of Santa Clarita and can be reached at [email protected].