Truth Before Dishonor

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Unfortunately, you cannot idiot-proof government.

Posted by Dana Pico on 2012/03/21


Regulatory Insanity, 2: A $17,000 Dumpster Ramp for the Handicapped

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:31 am

A reader from somewhere in Southern California writes to lament the regulatory roadblocks that are severely delaying the opening of his business:

We submitted our building construction plans for the restaurant last year to the county. We had over fifty revisions including a request that the trash dumpster have an enclosure. We stated that the dumpster had a walled enclosure of six feet in height and that the dumpster was rain proof. The County stated that we must have a roof over the trash dumpster. We had the architect draw it up. The plans returned rejected.

The County now rejected the dumpster enclosure because it violated the Americans with Disabilities Act. They required that we build a ramp with a locking gate at the top of the ramp for any wheelchair-bound employee. We argued that the public did not have access to the enclosure and we would not ask any employees in a wheelchair to throw out the trash. The County stated that the lack of a ramp would create a barrier to hiring a handicapped person.

The additional ramp with locking gate increased construction costs by $17,000 and it will take my employees longer to throw out the trash on a daily basis.

Much more at the original, as well as some sound discussion, but Patterico is primarily concerned with the idiocy of foisting unnecessary regulations in a manner which will increase costs to businesses. Roughly five out of every six Americans who have jobs work for private businesses, and adding additional, unnecessary regulatory burdens places additional costs on just the people we want, and need, to create new jobs.

I noticed something a bit different.

We stated that the dumpster had a walled enclosure of six feet in height and that the dumpster was rain proof. The County stated that we must have a roof over the trash dumpster.

Think about how a dumpster is emptied. The truck comes, with the forks, which it puts in the slots on the side of the dumpster. The driver then picks it up and dumps the contents into the truck. If the dumpster pad has a roof on it, the truck must pick up the dumpster a few inches, then back out before it can raise the container and dump the garbage into the truck, lower the container, and then pull forward to place the container back in the enclosure. This is an additional burning of Gaia-harming diesel fuel, spewing yet more CO2 into the atmosphere where it will melt Antarctica and drown all of the penguins!

That, of course, is if the business owner is lucky. If he isn’t lucky, the truck won’t back up far enough, and when it raises the dumpster, it will tear the roof all to pieces, spreading debris and rusty nails and splinters all over the parking lot, where some customer will step on a nail or puncture a tire. And if he is really unlucky, in the process of destroying the roof, it will somehow snag the dumpster, and throw it to the ground, upside down, scattering all of the garbage through the parking lot.

In construction, you try to idiot-proof as much as you can. Unfortunately, you cannot idiot-proof government.


One Response to “Unfortunately, you cannot idiot-proof government.”

  1. […] you cannot idiot-proof government. _________________________________________ Cross posted on Truth Before Dishonor. Filed under Business, Capitalism, Economics, Insanity Comment (RSS) […]


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