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Curbside Collection Update

On of March 24, 2024, our curbside collection agreement with Casella will be ending. As of March 25, 2024 residents will have to pay for trash removal.

The Southbridge Town Council voted to maintain the  town-wide contracted curbside trash collection we presently have. The questions is, how will we pay for it?

The Council created a Curbside Collection Committee and I was appointed Chair.
We have been looking at three options for the program 1.Property Taxes  2.Flat Fee (utility bill such as water and sewer) 3.User Fee (Pay As You Throw bag program PAYT)
They may be a combination of these programs as the bag program would not generate enough income to pay for the whole program.

We sent out a survey to residents with the town census. The responses that came back showed that most residents prefered a PAYT program. Property Taxes came in second and then Flat Fee third, but it was almost split even between taxes and fee.

Some of the issues we discussed were:

User Fee such as a bag program. Residents would purchase speciality town bags (through local stores). The more bags you use, the more you pay. It has been shown that bag purchases encourages recycling and cuts down on trash and reduces costs.

Flat Fee such as a utility bill would be paid quarterly. Some residents feel this is fair system because it's not based on property values. However, it is based on tenants. So as a landlord, if you have a 3-family apartment, you would be billed for 3-families. Property owners are responsible for the trash removal, but I presume you would pass this cost on to your renters.

Per State Law, you can opt out of the flat fee program, as it is an enterprise fund. However, you would have to provide proof that you are getting curbside pick-up by a licensed hauler, which is more expensive than if we provide it collectively as a town.

Property Taxes. No opting out. Every homeowner pays according to their property value (including businesses). Some feel this is an unfair system. I wouldn't disagree, however; trash will get picked up. It also makes it easier to set the cost when we know exactly the number of people in the system. (No opting out).

We've also been lookking at allowing small businesses to opt in.

Some residents have been asking us about the costs. We are in the process of getting RFPs (requests for proposals) from the haulers. Until we know for sure, we can only estimate. The cost for town-wide pickup is around $1.8 million per year.

Our estimate is around $300 per year per household. If we go with the Flat Fee and you have a 3-family, than it would cost you per family, or $900 per year. Again, this is just an estimate.

We are planning to provide service to 7,000 residents. Up to 6-family. Same as our current service.  


New Landlord Bills - January 2023


Rent Control - November 2021


First Right of Refusal - October 2021