Council Approves Changes to Garbage Collection

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Karen Graham

Wayne Hancock, Director of Public Works, submitted recommendations to Council on Monday regarding the Township waste collection program. After reviewing the waste policies of other municipalities along with the proposed new County By-law, Hancock recommended the elimination of bag tags for curbside collection of residential and commercial waste and the issue of tags free of charge to residents wishing to continue to dispose of their waste at the Transfer Station. For Commercial organizations, including industrial and institutional entities, there will be a four bag per week limit where the municipality provides for curbside collection. The weekly limit for residential pick up remains at two bags per week. Commercial property owners can dispose of waste in excess of their weekly limit by purchasing commercial bag tags at the municipal office for $2.25 each and bringing it to the Transfer Station.

Staff suggested that the Township Waste Collector monitor the number of bags at the curbside and only pick up the maximum number of bags at each stop, leaving any bags that are over the limit. The local collector will also monitor the size of garbage bags, which under existing by-laws must weigh thirty pounds or less.

Residents wishing to continue to use the Transfer Station for their waste disposal will be required to obtain bag tags at the Municipal Office which will be free of charge. These residents will be recorded on a list in order to verify those property owners who will not be using the curbside program. The bag tags will be distributed in sheets of 26 units, with an annual limit of 104 tags for each residential property owner. Tag users will be required to affix these tags to their garbage bags prior to their disposal at the Transfer Station.

The ultimate objective of waste disposal policy is to reduce waste and encourage recycling, and the feeling is that curbside collection is reducing waste, but this cannot be confirmed until the contractor submits the numbers. The Township must change current programs to promote this through the introduction of tighter controls in order to meet the annual allowance which will be established by the County in 2018 or face financial penalties. While reducing waste generation is the main objective of these upcoming changes, the recommendations have the happy by-product of reducing the operating expense of the bag tag program by $2,500 per year.

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