Cortland council member Bill Carpenter (D-6th Ward) announced at Tuesday’s meeting that the city will transition to a bin system for trash and recycling starting Jan. 1 next year,
Carpenter, a member of the city’s ad hoc waste and recycling advisory committee, said the move will officially end the nearly 40-year reign of the blue bag system in Cortland at the end of this year. The City’s current deal with the elimination of Bert Adams includes a Big (or Small) Blue Bag Pickup and a Glass Pickup only during the first week of each month..
“The system is broken,” Carpenter said of the blue bag system. The current cost is $5 for 36 gallon bags and $3.25 for 18 gallon bags. “I think the public is going to be happy (with the catch-all system). There will be no further aggravation.
Carpenter noted that the committee will soon send out a request for proposals to garbage and waste companies to collect bids for a new contract early next year. He added that the goal is to provide one garbage bin and one recycling bin for every household. If necessary, Carpenter added, a $150 fee will be issued for residents requesting an additional bag.
More importantly, Carpenter said, townspeople will soon no longer have to buy blue bags at the store.
“That’s why we pay taxes,” Carpenter added, noting that the new contract will be implemented through city taxes.
Details on how the new contract will be implemented in city taxes remain to be seen.
City Councilman Seth Thompson (D-5th Ward) mentioned that the committee’s decision to move to a bin system was primarily due to the “strong response” through the investigation into city garbage and recycling collection.
“What I found important was that about 90% of respondents (to the survey) were current users of blue bags,” Thompson said, noting that it wasn’t just residents. who used another service or brought their waste elsewhere. “It was noted that the current service and price were not aligned.”
Thompson said the upcoming move to a catch-all system in the city will be an opportunity “to look at change and a positive difference.”