The City Council on Tuesday approved an order from Mayor Kos to implement a new curbside trash pick-up program known as Pay-As-You-Throw/Save-Money-And-Reduction-Trash (PAYT/SMART) to go into effect on or about May 1, 2017. The current trash pickup program is being phased out because of the impending closure of the current landfill utilized by the City.
Last week the City received a $338,000 grant from the MassDEP to implement PAYT and to hire a waste reduction enforcement coordinator to help implement the new recycling program and monitor resident compliance to ensure that the new trash carts are being used and trash is not being put into the existing recycling carts.
Under the new program residents will be issued a 35-gallon trash toter which they are able to fill on a weekly basis at no cost. While the average resident will not be impacted by the new program, those who exceed the 35-gallon amount of trash will be required to purchase City issued bags at a cost of $1.50 for small ones and $2 for larger ones.
In addition, residents are expected to recycle all possible materials mandated by city ordinance. Those who do not will face a $100 fine.
“A lot of time and effort has been spent on figuring out the most efficient and cost effective way to collect trash once the landfill closes,” said Mayor Kos. “The average resident should not see additional costs to their trash pickup and the City should be able to minimize the costs to the taxpayers. This is a win-win for the City.”
Residents have received notices of what is and is not acceptable to recycle in their electric bills this year and multiple public meetings have taken place to educate the public on the new programs. Those seeking more information are encouraged to reach out to Environmental Programs Coordinator Barry Brouillard at 413-594-3557, ext. 303 or the Mayor’s office at 413-594-1500.