1/10/2013 9:19:00 AM Solid waste fee to stay at $10, dump sites on cleanup plan
County commissioners did not adjust the 2013 “solid waste management fee” that is collected as a line item with your taxes. The County Board accepted staff recommendation to leave the surcharge for 2013 at $10 per unit. The annual fee has been $10 for five years. In past years the fee has helped to provide for special recyclables collections at low or no cost for residents and other environmentally focused efforts; including the household hazardous waste facility services in North Branch. The facility is open every non-Holiday Monday from noon to 7 p.m. and the last Saturday of every month from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. County residents can dispose of a variety of toxic materials there; oil, paints, solvents, cleaners, auto products. (see www.co.chisago.mn.us) Solid Waste personnel are also planning to promote or expand existing programs, according to the county’s Solid Waste Coordinator Lisa Thobodeau.
The county goals include contacting waste generators in the county about expanding the materials exchange website (you post useable items you want to get rid of, or look for items you could use--again see the county website under materials exchange). Solid waste department staff also hope to be coordinating improved recycling efforts at apartment complexes and associations in the coming year. There’s ongoing public outreach to hardware, thrift stores, pharmacies, etc. about the hazardous waste recycling facility services. Staff already work with organizers of large events to boost waste recycling. There are also ongoing public education efforts to rid the county of burn barrells and see to it that mattresses and other bulky items get into proper disposal programs through the East Central Solid Waste Commission sites. The County Board was advised that there’s nearly $1.2 million in the solid waste fee account. The fee brings in about $200,000 annually (in 2012 it was $234,333.) There’s also a tentative plan to appropriate a portion of some of the carryover balance towards abating a dump on School Lake, in a joint cleanup project with Chisago City.