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The original item was published from 7/9/2018 4:09:59 PM to 11/9/2018 12:00:01 AM.

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Pitkin County Press Releases

Posted on: July 9, 2018

[ARCHIVED] Incentives for Waste Reduction Theme of Draft Ordinance

Curbside Recycling and Trash (2)

Pitkin County is in the process of updating its 1991 Waste and Recycling Ordinance with an eye on cost incentives for waste reduction. Under the proposed ordinance, single-stream recycling would be included on all residential and commercial trash bills. The new ordinance would encourage recycling and waste diversion by requiring haulers to provide a variable rate structure, or what is known in the industry as  "Save-as-you-Throw.”  

“Save-as-you-throw is volume-based rate structure, which is tied to level of service,” said Pitkin County Solid Waste Manager, Cathy Hall. “Unlike flat rates where you pay the same no matter how much trash and recycling you have, this system will provide lower rates if you create less waste. We hope this will help to change buying and wasting habits and encourage more recycling or composting,” Hall said. 

One of the significant changes in the new ordinance will be that recycling for Pitkin County residents and businesses will be provided as part of trash service.  In the past, recycling was only required to be offered and not automatically provided.  Residents and businesses can opt out of recycling, but they will still be required to pay for recycling as part of their collection service.  Pitkin County has determined that recycling is a pivotal part of effectively managing the county’s resources and protecting public welfare.  

“Updating our Waste and Recycling Ordinance is way overdue,” Hall said. “A lot has changed in the waste and recycling industry since the last update in 1991 and as the industry continues to evolve it is important Pitkin County reflect the current standards for waste management, and that every resident and business has the chance to recycle.” 

Pitkin County staff are conducting a public review process before the ordinance is finalized and approved by the Board of County Commissioners.  Public meetings are scheduled for Thursday, July 19, 2018, from 1 pm to 3 pm at the Pitkin County Library and on August 27, 2018, from 6 pm to 8 pm at Basalt Town Hall.  The public also has an opportunity to comment on the draft ordinance online at  

For more information on the new waste and recycling ordinance, please visit or contact the Pitkin County Solid Waste Manager, or by phone at 970-429-2882.

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