Truckee trashing green waste proposal amid mixed feedback | SierraSun.com
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Truckee trashing green waste proposal amid mixed feedback

Margaret Moran
mmoran@sierrasun.com

By the numbers

54: percent would support the cart program.

32: percent wouldn’t support the program.

14: percent wouldn’t need the service.

Source: Town of Truckee online survey, out of 1,074 respondents to that question.

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More online

Click here to learn more about the yard waste disposal programs offered by the town of Truckee.

TRUCKEE, Calif. — The recommendation to change how green waste is collected in Truckee is not moving forward amid mixed community feedback.

The town was considering replacing the use of green plastic bags for 96-gallon rolling carts, to be implemented over two years, starting with Tahoe Donner and Glenshire in May.

Of 1,074 people who answered a survey question related to the switch, 54 percent said they would support it, 32 percent said they wouldn’t, and 14 percent said they wouldn’t need the service, said Nichole Dorr, recycling coordinator for the town.

Since “a landslide of support” wasn’t seen, the town will continue its green bag program while working with Tahoe Truckee Sierra Disposal and local homeowner associations to come up with another recommendation, she said at Thursday’s town council meeting.

There is no recommendation at this time, Dorr said Tuesday.

The switch was proposed to address piles of green bags, the use of plastic, TTSD worker safety and town costs associated with the green bag program, Dorr said.

Currently, the town’s cost is $2.95 per bag collected, and with about 76,000 bags picked up annually, that’s a cost of nearly $225,000, she said.

In the program’s first full fiscal year (2010-11) it cost $149,661, since fewer bags (53,414) were collected.

The cart program would save the town money, Dorr said, since it requires less labor at collection and results in a lower Eastern Regional Landfill gate fee.

In addition, it would eliminate the use of plastic bags and their purchase cost (approximately $1.25 per bag) to residents.

Yet, issues raised residents include difficulties with cart storage, and putting out and retrieving carts on collection day when out of town.

“This is one of those situations where you can’t please all the people all of the time,” said Jeff Collins, general manager of TTSD. “There’s always going to be some problem. … Anytime you think you’ve found a solution in one direction, some other problem pops up.”

The town’s free drop-off of up to six yards of yard waste at the Eastern Regional Landfill and its reduced rate yard-waste-only Dumpster programs will also continue.

An education effort will be done on those options, emphasizing use when a large amount of green waste is generated, Dorr said.

In addition, the public will be encouraged to put out only four green bags on collection day to discourage large piles from sitting for extended periods, she said.

“We don’t want to lose sight that the real thrust here is to make this community fire safe, especially when you see years like this,” Collins said. “… We want to get that fuel off and away to keep this community safe.”


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