“Hello, I Need You To Spray Some Febreeze!”
This was an actual AP story today:
Odor line: Is it a wet dog, dung stench?
Thu Sep 27, 4:19 PM ET
Something that smelled like a wet dog that rolled in manure and a report of a pungent, foul odor that has persisted for the last 13 years are among the calls so far to a 24-hour “odor hot line.”
The city of Woodland set up the hot line this month to help investigate a recent flood of complaints about nasty smells in a place where urban growth has encroached on areas that once were strictly devoted to farming.
“We have had a couple of issues about odor, but when you live in a food processing area and near sewer areas, you’re going to get those problems every once in a while,” said Marlin “Skip” Davies, vice mayor of Woodland, which is about 20 miles northwest of Sacramento.
Callers are urged to be specific — noting the time, place and wind direction when the odor was detected — and are asked to use descriptors, such as musty, pungent, compost-like, swampy or smelling of wet hay.
“Residents were complaining that it smelled awful, but they were not giving specifics,” said Loida Osoteo, the city public environmental services manager, who also answers hot line calls. “Now when they say it stinks, they have to be more specific about what they smell.”
The city uses the information to recommend solutions for reducing the smell, such as treating wastewater.
Residents who are unaccustomed to the stench of farm animals, manure and food processing facilities sometimes have problems when they move to once-rural areas, said Edward Thompson Jr., California state director of American Farmland Trust. He said although many states began adopting “Right to Farm” laws in the 1980s to protect farmers from lawsuits, most laws still protect the average resident.
In Woodland, the city’s wastewater treatment plant and a tomato cannery near Interstate 5 have so far been identified as the two most stinky culprits, Osoteo said.
Still, odor problems in Woodland have improved over the past several years as farmers work on odor mitigation, said Davies, the vice mayor.
What?! Some government bureaucrat has created a hot line with actual humans answering the phone and getting a paycheck because people smell something. This is efficient? I love the fact that the “government worker” says that people aren’t being specific enough. What do you need to know? “It smells bad” or “It stinks” is not enough ? I guess you have to say something like “It smells like the inside of the large intestine of an emu after it has eaten some St. Augustine grass.” Seriously?
The smells have lasted for 13 YEARS! I have an idea, send out a crack-pot team of city environmental managers to the areas that stink, have them locate the source of the smell, then have an RFP (request for proposal) process whereby various entities can submit bids to spray Febreeze from a crop duster all over the area because after all Febreeze “eliminates odors and freshens the air.” Then the city of Woodland will take the best bid (the one who contributed most to the mayoral campaign) and the odor elimination process will begin.
Of course, this means that the Odor Hot-Line personnel will be out of a job, but since they are government employees they will just be reassigned. For that I have an excellent idea. They should start an “I’ve Lost My Keys” hot line. Then everytime someone is about to leave for work or to go to some California Love-In and they can’t find their keys they don’t have to panic, they can just dial 1-800-Los-tkey and some government idiot can calm them down.
If this keeps up our Tax Rate will be 90% of our income just to pay for all of this insanity!
P.S. This just in—the “odor mitigation” that the farmers are doing is working. They have connected hoses to the back sides of all the cows and pigs to capture the methane gas emitted from their anal cavity. They are bottling it and selling it to Rev. Jackson so that he will have an extra supply in case he runs out during one of his hate-speeches. Good thinking guys!