City Council to Consider Proposed Residential Trash Fee Increase on Tuesday, January 19
On Tuesday, January 19, 2021 at 6:00PM, the City Council will consider a proposed residential trash fee increase of $0.98 per household per month. If approved, the residential trash fee will increase from $22.16 to $23.14 per month.
Please take a moment to read the information below and review the linked documents, which provide further information on the proposed rate increase and the process for public input. The City Council agenda for the January 19 meeting will include instructions for participating in the meeting via public comments.
Why is this increase necessary?
A change in State law took effect on January 1, 2020 that affects the way that the City’s hauling company, Rainbow/Republic Services, can reuse green waste. Historically, most of the green material collected from Huntington Beach households was ground, sifted, and transported to the landfill, where it was applied to the top of each day’s disposal as a cap layer to seal off odors and pests. This reuse of the green material was beneficial to the landfill operator, and the landfill supported the practice by accepting this material at no charge.
This free beneficial reuse was built into the city’s current residential rate structure at the time the City Council approved the change to the 3-container system for green waste, recyclables, and landfill waste in 2006. However, effective January 1, 2020, this reuse is no longer allowed. The State changed the law to achieve a reduction in greenhouse gas emission by reducing landfill organics. As a result, the landfill began charging a fee per ton to accept the city’s residential green material, and this material is no longer counted towards the city’s per capita recycling target set by the state.
What does this increase pay for?
The monthly rate increase is a direct pass through to Rainbow/Republic to pay the increased cost to compost the green material differently and at new locations.
Does everyone have to pay this increase? Some households have no green container or hardly use their green container.
The city’s residential rates are a level fee per household. The monthly charges do not vary with the size of the containers, the number or type of containers, or the number of times they are placed for collection. The increase is for all households that use the residential service. It does not apply to apartments, condominiums, or townhomes that use shared dumpsters.
The pandemic has caused a great deal of financial hardship in the community. Why do this now?
The City recognizes the hardships of the COVID-19 pandemic, and because of the ongoing crisis, we delayed implementing this increase as long as possible through 2020 while remaining compliant with state recycling mandates. However, we have reached the point where the Refuse fund can no longer bear the expense, and we must implement a permanent program in order to continue to meet our recycling targets and remain compliant with State recycling mandates.
Attachment: 2021 Jan 19 prop 218 notice FINAL bw.pdf