Only 14 formal protests were submitted to block vote on refuse rate increases when 1,361 were needed
By Paul Myers @PaulM_SGN
LINDSAY – Lindsay is putting themselves on a more sustainable path when it comes to their infrastructure for refuse.
Residents had an opportunity last month to dump rate increases on their trash. According to city services director Mike Camarena, there would need to be 1,361 formal protests submitted to stifle a council vote in increases. By the time votes were counted at last month’s Oct. 22 council meeting only 14 were handed in.
Lindsay’s 4-0 vote, Brian Watson was absent with notice, put an end to the Proposition 218 process where residents were given 45 days to oppose their new trash rates. New rates took effect on Nov. 1, and new organics rates were added the same day.
Organics refuse were implemented as businesses are required under the state to recycle their organic waste. According to a city staff report, businesses that generate four cubic yards or more of commercial solid waste per week shall arrange for organic waste recycling services. Food waste, green waste, landscape and pruning waste, non-hazardous wood waste and food-soiled paper waster all fall within organics.
The city has implemented several monthly rates starting on Nov. 1 for commercial organics services. Starting at a 90-gallon container picked up once a week at $24.88; the same size at twice a week at a rate of $43.73; a two-yard container at once a week at a rate of $98.01; and a two-yard container at twice a week at $177.93.
Miscellaneous fees including enclosure access, locking lid fees, push/pull charge grange from $24.72 to $30.90. Extra pick up per cubic yards fees including municipal solid waste, recycling and organics are rated at $46.56, $26.61 and $44.66, respectively.
Interim city manager, then city clerk and director of finance, Bret Harmon said during the July 23 city council discussion that the city cannot afford the cost of service as revenue’s currently stood. Harmon outlined that the city is billed monthly by Mid Valley Disposal who provides pickup services to customers, and the city bills customers to recoup their cost. In his presentation Harmon notes that service rates do not cover costs.
Residential customers will now see an increase from this month as residential refuse rates will rise from $22.68 to $25.04, then in July 2020 the rate will increase by 3% to $25.79, then 3% again to $26.56 by July 2021, then 3% again to $27.36 by July 2022 and then 3% again to $28.18.
Commercial refuse services will also rise depending on the cubic yardage and amount of times per week each can picked up. The cost currently ranges between $22.68 to a maximum of $1,076.81. The cost will rise 3% per year beginning on Nov. 1 this year ranging from $25.04 to $1,189.16. By July 2023 the cost will range from $28.18 to $1,338.41.
Commercial recycling in a similar fashion depends on the amount of recyclables being used and the amount of times it is picked up per week. The current cost for 1 cubic yard container picked up once per week is $30.12. A 6-yard container picked up twice a week is $212.60 per month. On Nov. 1 of this year the cost will be $44.19 per month for the 1-yard container and $311.86 per month for the 6-yard container. The cost will increase by 3% every year until July 2023 where the cost will $49.74 per month for the 1-yard container and then $351 for the six-yard container.