City's New Waste Management Contract Means Changes in Trash, Recycling Service

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 06/19/2019 - 01:14

City of Saline residents will soon experience changes in the way they dispose of trash and recyclables.

At Monday’s meeting, Saline City Council approved a new five-year deal with Waste Management for solid waste and recycling service.

The cost of the service continues to rise – even as services are scaled back. The city had considered increasing the per-unit charge of $15.93 to $16.35 – a price that would rise to $19.13 by year five. Instead, the chose to reduce payment to Waste Management  ($14.50 in year one) while absorbing the cost of recycling processing. Department of Public Works Director Jeff Fordice said the final cost to the city will be approximately the same unless there are major changes in the markets. The city could see cost savings if city residents send “cleaner” recyclables that require less work at the processer. This could also give the city more flexibility if the Washtenaw Recycling Coalition manages, which Saline joined in February, manages to find its own materials recover facility for sorting and processing.

Currently, Fordice said, it’s estimated that 30 percent of the goods Salinians recycle end up in the landfill.

Big picture issues aside, there are some everyday changes awaiting Saline residents.

  • Residents will soon no longer be able to put loose garbage bags out for pickup. Instead, Waste Management will provide trash carts (three different sizes will be offered) that must be used. Customer-owned containers will no longer be accepted. Waste Management will provide a 96-gallon cart. Residents will have a one-time opportunity to change to 64 or 35-gallon carts at no charge, within 60 days of delivery of the bigger cart.
  • Loose brush will still be picked up, with an advance call to Waste Management. The brush must be bundled. Branches can be no longer than six feet in length and six inches in diameter. Bundles should be no more than 18 inches in diameter and no more than 50 pounds.
  • Waste Management will pick up bulk items at no cost – but advance calls must be made. Items with freon will require and advance call and payment of $35 per item.

The other change the shrinking list of acceptable recyclables. The following goods can be recycled:

  • Aluminum cans.
  • PET bottles with the #1 symbol – with screw tops only.
  • HDPE plastic bottles with the #2 symbol (milk, water bottles, detergent, shampoo).
  • PP plastic bottles and tubes with the #5 symbol.
  • Steel and tin cans.
  • Glass food and beverage containers – brown, clear or green.
  • Newspaper.
  • Mail.
  • Uncoated paperboard (cereal boxes, snack boxes)
  • Uncoated printing, writing and office paper.
  • Old corrugated containers and cardboard (uncoated)
  • Magazines, glossy inserts and pamplets.

The following goods are not recyclable

  • Plastic bags and bagged materials containing recyclables.
  • Porcelain/ceramics.
  • Light bulbs.
  • Soiled paper, including paper pates, cubs and pizza boxes.
  • Expanded polystyrene.
  • Glass and metal cookware/bakeware.
  • Hoses, cords and wires.
  • Flexible plastic or film packaging and multilaminated materials.
  • Containers containing food waste and liquits.
  • Cartons.
  • Microwave trays.
  • Mirrors, window or auto glass.
  • Coated cardboard.
  • Any recyclable materials or pieces of paper less than four inches in in size.
  • Plastics with the #3, 4, 5 and 7 symbols.
  • Coat hangers.
  • Textiles, cloth and fabric.
  • Napkins, paper towels, tissue, paper plates and paper cups.
  • Yard waste, construction debris and wood.
  • Propane tanks and batteries.
  • Aseptic containers.
  • Household appliances and  electronics.
  • Needles, syringes, IV bags and other medical supplies.

Council has yet to decide whether to replace the city hall recycling center’s individual bins with larger dumpsters.


Tran Longmoore's picture
Tran Longmoore
Tran Longmoore is a veteran community journalist. He is founder and owner of He is co-publisher of The Saline Post weekly newspaper. Email him at [email protected] or call him at 734-272-6294.

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