4R Times
Winter Newsletter
Volume IV | Issue IV
Fee Changes for 2020
Starting in January, new fees will go into effect for the recycling and disposal of certain types of materials at the Recycling and Solid Waste Center (RSWC). Notably for residents, yard waste and electronic televisions and monitors will now require a solid waste permit and a fee. Yard waste can be paid for by the bag or can with a yard waste punch card or at the scales, and televisions and monitors will cost $15 each.

“Fee increases have been necessitated by an increase in the overall cost of disposal and recycling,” said Recycling and Materials Management Director Barbara Eckstrom. “This is due to lower revenues from the sale of recyclable materials, and increased contract costs for waste transportation and recycling operations.”

The following table summarizes the fee changes:
Other fee increases going into effect include trash, commercial recycling, commercial food scraps, and tires. The full fee structure is available at recycletompkins.org/fees .
Paper Bag Fee
When New York State’s plastic bag ban goes into effect on March 1st, 2020, it will be accompanied by a $.05 fee on paper carryout bags. The fee is intended to incentivize the use of reusable bags, which have the best environmental impact over time. The fee on paper carryout bags is part of a local law passed by the Tompkins County Legislature. Some types of paper bags are exempt, and SNAP and WIC recipients will not be charged. Revenue from the fees will be used for the state’s Environmental Protection Fund and for purchasing and distributing reusable bags to low– and fixed-income residents in our community.
Recycling Contamination Warning Stickers
Items that don’t belong in the recycling stream are contaminants, and they can slow down recycling operations, degrade the quality of recycled material, and ultimately lower the value of recyclable commodities.

Recyclables with contamination can be outright rejected by markets, causing
otherwise perfectly good materials to go to a landfill at great expense. Common sources of contamination include plastic bags, Styrofoam, padded envelopes,
coffee cups, and cigarette butts. 

Beginning in December, recycling bins with
contamination will receive orange “Warning” stickers, giving residents an
opportunity to take note of recycling mistakes they made. By April, residents who put unacceptable items in their recycling container will receive a red “Rejected” sticker and the contents of their bin will not be collected.

Information about what items are accepted for recycling can be found at
recycletompkins.org , and in the 2019-2020 Curbside Recycling Guidelines.
Recycling in Inclement Weather
Poor road conditions due to inclement winter weather can cause delays in
curbside recycling collection. Here are ways residents can help prevent delays:

· Remove snow and extra materials from around their recycling bins
· Place recycling bins in accessible locations
· Secure materials by placing heavier items like cans and bottles on top of paper or other items that could blow around

Updates on the status of curbside recycling collection are posted at recycletompkins.org . Collection calendars from the “Find My Recycling Day” tool and automatic reminders will be updated to reflect any change in schedule.
Holiday Closings
Christmas Day
December 25th
RMM office and RSWC closed
Curbside recycling on one day delay for rest of week

New Year's Day
January 1st
RMM office and RSWC closed
Curbside recycling on one day delay for rest of week

MLK Jr Day
January 20th
RMM office closed

Presidents Day
February 18th
RMM office closed

The Find My Recycling Day tool automatically adjusts for holidays-- sign up today!
We're Hiring!
Consultants are needed to staff our Food Scraps Recycling Drop Spots.

Visit recycletompkins.org for more
information, including how to apply.

Did You Know...

Styrofoam is not recyclable, and is one of the most common
contaminants in recycling bins.

Tompkins County Recycling and Materials Management
(607) 273-6632 | reducewaste@tompkins-co.org | recycletompkins.org