Chicago Sun-Times - - POLITICS | NATION BEAT - BY FRAN SPIEL­MAN City Hall Re­porter

Mayor Rahm Emanuel is adding re­in­force­ments in Chicago’s never- end­ing war on rats.

The mayor’s 2018 bud­get will add five more ro­dent con­trol crews — for a to­tal of 30 — and pro­vide $ 500,000 in ad­di­tional fund­ing to pur­chase more black garbage carts.

Al­ready this year, the city has re­sponded to more than 23,400 re­quests to re­place lost, stolen or dam­aged carts. More than 10,000 black garbage carts and more than 3,000 blue re­cy­cling carts have been re­paired since Jan. 1, 2016.

The $ 1 mil­lion in­vest­ment will be in­cluded in the 2018 bud­get that Emanuel is sched­uled to un­veil next week

It will be paid for by ad­di­tional sav­ings gen­er­ated by and per­son­nel freed up from the switch from a ward- byward sys­tem of garbage col­lec­tion to a grid sys­tem.

“Th­ese crit­i­cal in­vest­ments in ro­dent con­trol and garbage carts al­low us to con­tinue to pro­vide the best pos­si­ble ser­vice on be­half of resi- dents,” Emanuel was quoted as say­ing in a press re­lease.

Streets and San­i­ta­tion Com­mis­sioner Charles Wil­liams said the ad­di­tional in­vest­ment will help en­sure that “ev­ery re­port” about rats is “ad­dressed within five days or less.”

The city has al­ready achieved that five- day stan­dard, even af­ter field­ing 39,000 rat abate­ment re­quests this year, the com­mis­sioner said.

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