KITCHENER -- The City of Waterloo’s much-debated loose leaf collection program will stay in place.

The move comes after city councillors voted five to two in favour of keeping the program during a virtual meeting Monday night.

The program collects leaves that residents rake to the curb during the month of November.

In a review of the program done in March 2021, city staff said resources are often stretched thin as the same crew that deals with leaves also handles snow removal.

Those against the program have argued that it is being abused with some people raking leaves from their entire property out to the curb, rather than from just the boulevard trees as intended.

As a result, council is directing city staff to come up with a communications strategy to encourage people to look at alternatives for their yard leaves.

The city will also look at developing a long-term strategy of alternatives for the program.