FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, January 13, 2012
Contact: Megan Gilliland, communications manager, (785) 832-3406
Solid Waste Task Force to hold public meeting to receive input on final draft report
(Lawrence, Kan.) – The City of Lawrence Solid Waste Task Force will hold a public input meeting on Thursday, January 19th from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. The task force is seeking community-wide input on the final draft of the Solid Waste Task Force report. The full report is posted at www.lawrenceks.org/swtf/files/swtf_draft_publicmeeting_2012jan19.pdf. The meeting will be held in the Commission Room at City Hall, 6 E. 6th Street.
The Solid Waste Task Force was established in March 2011 to develop recommendations to the City Commission regarding the long-term solid waste service options for the citizens of Lawrence. An important part of this process is receiving public input.
Citizens are encouraged to attend the public input meeting on January 19th. Comments may also be submitted to the Solid Waste Task Force through an online form available at www.lawrenceks.org/swtf/feedback if an interested party is unable to attend.
The Executive Summary of the report is below:
To achieve the goals for waste management, source reduction, and diversion, the Solid Waste Task Force envisions a residential service that includes two roll-out carts for single family customers as part of the standard monthly fee – one for trash and one for single stream recycling. The task force report articulates the services currently provided through solid waste user fees and the issues identified. Recommendations for overall service are bulleted below.
Residential solid waste services
· The City of Lawrence will continue to provide weekly collection of residential solid waste to ensure protection of public health, safety, and environment.
· Increase automation for residential trash collection by:
- Providing roll-out trash carts for residential services, which can be utilized immediately with the current fleet of semi-automated trucks.
- Increasing automation of trucks for residential service collection as current fleet units are replaced.
· Implement a variable rate pricing structure for residential solid waste services that encourages waste reduction and increases equity in the rate structure.
- Initial implementation of cart system for trash will include a standard trash rate that includes a roll-out cart. Other cart sizes may be available for modestly different rates.
- Additional roll-out carts would be available for a fixed fee per month to cover the cost of the cart and the additional landfill tonnage.
- Bulk item service (and up to five tires) would continue to be provided for no charge to minimize dumping and visual blight.
- Collection of excessive trash piles will be charged to the resident or property owner on a per event basis for piles which require one loader to expend more than five minutes to load the trash from a single stop. Customers with recurring charges will be assessed and may be asked to obtain a larger or second cart.
- Evaluate need to implement additional variable rate pricing measures after a couple years of program implementation, if problems are identified with a large number of households who regularly exceed trash / recycling cart space.
· The City of Lawrence will continue to provide weekly collection of yard trimmings to keep materials out of landfill waste stream.
· Implement city-wide single-stream curbside recycling if fiscally prudent and sustainable. City-wide program would be included in the standard rate for residential service (participation voluntary).
- Evaluate costs and opportunities by soliciting a Request for Proposals (RFP) for single-stream curbside recycling.
- The RFP should have two (2) alternatives, to separately evaluate collection and processing components. In other words, companies will be asked to submit proposals for:
- turn-key operations (company provided collection and material processing), and
- material processing only (which would allow municipal collection of materials).
· Promote adequate number of drop-off points for glass, if material is not accepted in single-stream curbside collection system.
· Increase diversion of organic materials from the waste stream by:
- Focusing education, and outreach on backyard composting of both yard trimmings and food waste.
- Examining the collection of vegetative food waste for residential customers as part of existing residential collection of yard trimmings.
· Develop long-range plan for sustainable household hazardous waste program, balancing needs for fiscal responsibility and customer convenience. Issues that must be addressed include adequate physical facilities, access, marketing, staffing, and ability to staff for open hours that may not require appointments.
· Develop comprehensive outreach and education program to facilitate the implementation of solid waste program changes. Assist residents in ability to easily find information about recycling specific waste streams by creating a searchable web page.
Commercial solid waste services
The Solid Waste Task Force did not have adequate time to analyze significant changes for commercial or multi-family solid waste services. Staff and policy-makers should be alert for opportunities to enhance commercial services toward the goals of source reduction and increased solid waste diversion. Continued improvements in these areas are critical to achieving diversion goals.
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