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Thread: The Law of Garbage

  1. #1
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    Default The Law of Garbage

    Recently a topic has surfaced at my work place, which is a provincial
    government site. The subject centers around some junked computer parts that
    a work took home, witness by the manager of that department. The parts ended
    up in his basement for at least 8 months, after which they found there way
    onto EBay, by yet another employee, not involved with the removal of the
    computer parts. At the moment the question is have there been any laws
    broken? And who is culpable the Manger who witness parts being taken from
    the garbage, the employee who took the parts home for 8 months or the
    employee who ultimately sold those parts on EBay? I'm wondering about the
    the legal owner of garbage?

    Looking forward to comments.



  2. #2
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    Default The Law of Garbage

    On Sat, 26 Mar 2005 01:09:41 GMT, "John Turner"
    <flytrapcan@hotmail.com> wrote something wonderfully witty:
    Recently a topic has surfaced at my work place, which is a provincialgovernment site. The subject centers around some junked computer parts thata work took home, witness by the manager of that department. The parts endedup in his basement for at least 8 months, after which they found there wayonto EBay, by yet another employee, not involved with the removal of thecomputer parts. At the moment the question is have there been any lawsbroken? And who is culpable the Manger who witness parts being taken fromthe garbage, the employee who took the parts home for 8 months or theemployee who ultimately sold those parts on EBay? I'm wondering about thethe legal owner of garbage?Looking forward to comments.
    This is an all depends. Just for reference I happen to be an IT
    professional in the refuse industry within the Public Sector. If the
    "garbage" was a wastebasket within the shop then it could be theft by
    the person who took the parts and receiving stolen property by the
    person who sold them. It is all going to depend on organizational
    policies & procedures.

    Now if the garbage was a commercial dumpster provided by a private
    hauling & disposal company, it could still be theft, but the question
    now becomes from whom. Many waste haulers will have clauses in their
    contracts that say once an item is placed in their dumpster it becomes
    their property. Garbage is now valuable with a certain intrinsic
    value. There are those that dumpster dive for recyclable materials
    such as soda cans. That is theft as these items have a value and the
    disposal company is relying on obtaining them as part of their revenue
    stream. They may have based their pricing based on the amount they
    expect to receive. The person who sold them on E-bay would still have
    received stolen property.

    At this point in time I would say that the highest level of
    culpability that the manager has is in the lack of performing his
    assigned duties and looking out for the rights of the company in
    question.

    A lot of this is going to go back to what policies & procedures that
    are in place and were broken. For example we have an administrative
    policy the prohibits scavenging. We also have a policy that states
    any excess materials that have an intrinsic value must be placed for
    public sale since they were purchased with public monies. We usually
    store up all the bits & pieces that accumulate over time and hold a
    bulk auction. The employees involved in the collection of said
    materials & items are forbidden from bidding on them. For example
    when we auction off surplus vehicles the personnel from the
    transportation department cannot bid or purchase them. When we
    auction off excess IT materials, personnel from the IT department
    cannot bid on them.

    I hope some of this helps or hinders as the case may be.

    BTW -- Were you the Manager, the person who took the parts, or the
    person who converted them to cash?

    More then likely the end result of this should be the establishment of
    the appropriate policies & procedures. Personally I the Manager
    involved was an idiot for ever letting an employee take any
    organizational asset home regardless of where it was found.
    --

    "Maybe worshiping the cross and the painful death rather
    than the well lived life really has distorted our sense
    of who we are and what life is about." -- Author unkown

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    Default The Law of Garbage

    Thank you for your response, it is to the point and clear.
    I have to admit that the details are not as describe in the original post.
    Forgive me but I still have trouble feeling anonymous on the Internet. In
    reality we are a private shop and EBay was not involved, but any pawn shop
    is just a local EBay.

    From your post the following line struck me most "A lot of this is going to
    go back to what policies & procedures that are in place and were broken."
    I've put a lot of my time and money into this business and have never
    considered a disposal policy - sounds ridiculous now.

    Like I said the Internet hasn't convinced me of anonymity, but I will say
    that the employee will be dealt with fairly. The manager in question will be
    responsible for aiding in the drafting and finalizing of disposal policies.
    I do like the idea of holding an auction on occasion, maybe the proceeds
    will go to charity.




    "ZombyWoof" <Zomby-Woof@Zappa.net> wrote in message
    news:56pd41p33a6fmjfa0sf4ekp46lpn402bgj@4ax.com...
    On Sat, 26 Mar 2005 01:09:41 GMT, "John Turner" <flytrapcan@hotmail.com> wrote something wonderfully witty:
    Recently a topic has surfaced at my work place, which is a provincialgovernment site. The subject centers around some junked computer partsthata work took home, witness by the manager of that department. The partsendedup in his basement for at least 8 months, after which they found there wayonto EBay, by yet another employee, not involved with the removal of thecomputer parts. At the moment the question is have there been any lawsbroken? And who is culpable the Manger who witness parts being taken fromthe garbage, the employee who took the parts home for 8 months or theemployee who ultimately sold those parts on EBay? I'm wondering about thethe legal owner of garbage?Looking forward to comments.
    This is an all depends. Just for reference I happen to be an IT professional in the refuse industry within the Public Sector. If the "garbage" was a wastebasket within the shop then it could be theft by the person who took the parts and receiving stolen property by the person who sold them. It is all going to depend on organizational policies & procedures. Now if the garbage was a commercial dumpster provided by a private hauling & disposal company, it could still be theft, but the question now becomes from whom. Many waste haulers will have clauses in their contracts that say once an item is placed in their dumpster it becomes their property. Garbage is now valuable with a certain intrinsic value. There are those that dumpster dive for recyclable materials such as soda cans. That is theft as these items have a value and the disposal company is relying on obtaining them as part of their revenue stream. They may have based their pricing based on the amount they expect to receive. The person who sold them on E-bay would still have received stolen property. At this point in time I would say that the highest level of culpability that the manager has is in the lack of performing his assigned duties and looking out for the rights of the company in question. A lot of this is going to go back to what policies & procedures that are in place and were broken. For example we have an administrative policy the prohibits scavenging. We also have a policy that states any excess materials that have an intrinsic value must be placed for public sale since they were purchased with public monies. We usually store up all the bits & pieces that accumulate over time and hold a bulk auction. The employees involved in the collection of said materials & items are forbidden from bidding on them. For example when we auction off surplus vehicles the personnel from the transportation department cannot bid or purchase them. When we auction off excess IT materials, personnel from the IT department cannot bid on them. I hope some of this helps or hinders as the case may be. BTW -- Were you the Manager, the person who took the parts, or the person who converted them to cash? More then likely the end result of this should be the establishment of the appropriate policies & procedures. Personally I the Manager involved was an idiot for ever letting an employee take any organizational asset home regardless of where it was found. -- "Maybe worshiping the cross and the painful death rather than the well lived life really has distorted our sense of who we are and what life is about." -- Author unkown


  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
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    Default The Law of Garbage

    On Mon, 28 Mar 2005 05:21:52 GMT, "John Turner"
    <flytrapcan@hotmail.com> wrote something wonderfully witty:
    Thank you for your response, it is to the point and clear.I have to admit that the details are not as describe in the original post.Forgive me but I still have trouble feeling anonymous on the Internet. Inreality we are a private shop and EBay was not involved, but any pawn shopis just a local EBay.
    Exact facts are not really as important as the overall feeling of the
    situation. The taking of corporate assets and converting them into
    funds for private use is wrong no matter exactly how it goes down.
    From your post the following line struck me most "A lot of this is going togo back to what policies & procedures that are in place and were broken."I've put a lot of my time and money into this business and have neverconsidered a disposal policy - sounds ridiculous now.
    No not really, most polices & procedures come out of a situation
    arising that had not previously been dealt with. Many small
    businesses simply do not have the time to deal with all of the
    administrative issues that can come up. There are several different
    templates available on the web for most administrative polices you
    could think of. If I find the exact URL of IT policies that I have
    used, I'll post it for your review or usage. Basically it comes down
    to thou shall not steal.
    Like I said the Internet hasn't convinced me of anonymity, but I will saythat the employee will be dealt with fairly. The manager in question will beresponsible for aiding in the drafting and finalizing of disposal policies.I do like the idea of holding an auction on occasion, maybe the proceedswill go to charity.
    There is no real anonymity on the net. If one wants to make a
    concerted effort to track you down they can unless you have put at
    least that much energy into disguising your true identity. The way I
    look at it is simple, just never do anything you wouldn't want
    reprinted in your local paper or repeated in front of your Mommy. IMHO at best the only thing that can be done in lack of a policy is
    ask the seller to make restitution and admonish both the original
    taker & their Manager. I will say this, the Manager, not the
    employees bears considerable watching in the future. His/her
    judgement in the matter is suspect at best and I personally would not
    trust their decision making skills in the future, but I am a hardass
    when it comes to supervisory & managerial personnel. They are in that
    position so that I don't have to mind & tend to every little detail.Aside from auctions we do also donate usable equipment that no longer
    fits into our overall architecture plan to a local Children's Hospital
    thrift store. We rotate complete PC assets every five-years. These
    assets work perfectly fine, but are either to slow or inadequate for
    business software use. I usually give these away as door prizes at
    our annual employee recognition banquet.
    "ZombyWoof" <Zomby-Woof@Zappa.net> wrote in messagenews:56pd41p33a6fmjfa0sf4ekp46lpn402bgj@4ax .com...
    On Sat, 26 Mar 2005 01:09:41 GMT, "John Turner" <flytrapcan@hotmail.com> wrote something wonderfully witty:
    Recently a topic has surfaced at my work place, which is a provincialgovernment site. The subject centers around some junked computer partsthata work took home, witness by the manager of that department. The partsendedup in his basement for at least 8 months, after which they found there wayonto EBay, by yet another employee, not involved with the removal of thecomputer parts. At the moment the question is have there been any lawsbroken? And who is culpable the Manger who witness parts being taken fromthe garbage, the employee who took the parts home for 8 months or theemployee who ultimately sold those parts on EBay? I'm wondering about thethe legal owner of garbage?Looking forward to comments.
    This is an all depends. Just for reference I happen to be an IT professional in the refuse industry within the Public Sector. If the "garbage" was a wastebasket within the shop then it could be theft by the person who took the parts and receiving stolen property by the person who sold them. It is all going to depend on organizational policies & procedures. Now if the garbage was a commercial dumpster provided by a private hauling & disposal company, it could still be theft, but the question now becomes from whom. Many waste haulers will have clauses in their contracts that say once an item is placed in their dumpster it becomes their property. Garbage is now valuable with a certain intrinsic value. There are those that dumpster dive for recyclable materials such as soda cans. That is theft as these items have a value and the disposal company is relying on obtaining them as part of their revenue stream. They may have based their pricing based on the amount they expect to receive. The person who sold them on E-bay would still have received stolen property. At this point in time I would say that the highest level of culpability that the manager has is in the lack of performing his assigned duties and looking out for the rights of the company in question. A lot of this is going to go back to what policies & procedures that are in place and were broken. For example we have an administrative policy the prohibits scavenging. We also have a policy that states any excess materials that have an intrinsic value must be placed for public sale since they were purchased with public monies. We usually store up all the bits & pieces that accumulate over time and hold a bulk auction. The employees involved in the collection of said materials & items are forbidden from bidding on them. For example when we auction off surplus vehicles the personnel from the transportation department cannot bid or purchase them. When we auction off excess IT materials, personnel from the IT department cannot bid on them. I hope some of this helps or hinders as the case may be. BTW -- Were you the Manager, the person who took the parts, or the person who converted them to cash? More then likely the end result of this should be the establishment of the appropriate policies & procedures. Personally I the Manager involved was an idiot for ever letting an employee take any organizational asset home regardless of where it was found. -- "Maybe worshiping the cross and the painful death rather than the well lived life really has distorted our sense of who we are and what life is about." -- Author unkown
    --

    "Maybe worshiping the cross and the painful death rather
    than the well lived life really has distorted our sense
    of who we are and what life is about." -- Author unkown

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