The City of El Segundo provides solid waste collections and disposal for single-family and two-unit properties, in accordance with the Municipal Code. Currently, the City pays for these services from the General Fund, which provides funding for the Police and Fire Departments, Library Services, as well as maintenance of and improvements to the City’s infrastructure. Of California’s approximately 480 towns and cities, El Segundo is one of only three in the State where residents do not directly pay for solid waste collection services. In addition, State regulations such as AB939 (mandated landfill diversion, 1990), AB341 (business/multi-family recycling, 2012) and SB1383 (organic waste reduction, 2016) have increased the costs of providing these services on municipalities, and failure to comply can subject the City to fines of up to $10,000 per day.
Recognizing these facts and that the average monthly cost for waste collections of other cities within Los Angeles County is $28.06, the El Segundo City Council has proposed implementing a residential waste collection fee as early as February 1, 2019. The City is also procuring a new, regulatory-compliant municipal solid waste collection contract. The fee will be for the cost of the services and not exceed $20 per month per eligible dwelling in the City (single-family and two-unit properties), except for inflation adjustments in future years, if needed.
PUBLIC HEARING - NOVEMBER 6, 2018
At the Public Hearing, the City Council will hear public comments and will count the protest votes. If the City receives, prior to the closing of the Public Hearing, written protests against the fee from a majority of property owners eligible to receive the services, the City cannot impose the proposed fee.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: Who currently receives residential solid waste collection services?
A: Single-family and multi-family properties with four or fewer units. With the pending expiration of the current hauler’s contract in April 2019 (Republic Services), and in consideration of the next hauler’s contract, Council approved providing services to eligible properties as required in the City’s Municipal Code; that is, to single-family and two-family unit residences, not including condominiums or stock cooperatives.
Q: How will solid waste collections be provided for three- and four-unit properties?
A: After the next residential solid waste collections contract starts (estimated to occur May 1, 2019), owners with greater than two dwelling units on a property (including accessory dwelling units, or ADU’s) will need to hire a new solid waste collection company that is licensed to provide commercial collections in our City, and pay the company for the services. The next residential collections company can also serve commercial properties. The City will send out a detailed notice next spring after the new contract is awarded.
Q: I currently have unlimited trash pick-up. Will that continue with the new service?
A: Under a manual trash collection option residential customers will receive weekly unlimited trash collection. Residents will provide their own containers. They will also receive once per week unlimited recycling collection on the same day as their trash collection. The Company will provide 1-32 gallon container or 2-16 gallon containers, or equivalent. Residential customers will receive weekly unlimited organic materials collection on the same day as their trash collection. Residents will provide their own containers.
Under an automated trash service option residential customers will receive weekly automated trash service. Residential customers will also receive weekly automated recycling and organic materials collection on the same day as their trash collection. Customers may request additional recycling and organics carts.
Q: How much will the duplexes be charged for the residential collection services?
A: Each dwelling unit will be charged up to $20 for the services, so the owner(s) will be charged up to $40 per parcel for a duplex.
Q: Who currently pays for the residential collection services?
A: Single-family homes and multi-unit properties of four units or fewer do not currently pay anything for the services. Multi-unit properties of five or more obtain and pay for solid waste collection services from City-licensed haulers themselves.
Q: Where does the money come from?
A: The City pays for residential solid waste collection services from the General Fund.
Q: Do residents in other cities pay for Solid Waste Collection?
A: The City of El Segundo is one of only three cities in California that pays for its residents’ solid waste collection; residents of San Diego and Commerce do not directly pay for their waste collection services. There are approximately 480 cities and towns in the State.
Q: What does the General Fund pay for?
A: Public safety (Police and Fire), infrastructure improvements and maintenance (streets & sidewalks, for example), park improvements and maintenance, recreational programs, City staff resources, and other required governmental operations.
Q: What if this fee receives a majority protest?
A: The proposed fee would not be able to be collected by the City. With 3,230 eligible residential dwellings and a first year monthly fee of $20, the General Fund would have to provide almost $800,000 to pay for the services. The current contract rate is about half of that, or $400,000 total.
Q: Will I have a choice of the type of collection method?
A: No, either manual or automated services will be provided. However, the City’s Request for Proposals (RFP) that the haulers will respond to requires them to submit costs to provide manual collections (as is done now) and automated collections. The City of El Segundo is the only city in LA County that uses curbside, manual collection for its solid waste. Automated services are more effective, efficient, and cleaner, will inherently encourage residents to reduce their waste stream, and will provide a specific green waste container that can also accept organic material (food waste). This is important so the City can be in compliance with the State’s Department of Resources, Recycling and Recovery (“CalRecycle”) rules and regulations.
Q: Will payment be made directly to the collection company or the City?
A: The payment will be made directly to the collection company.
Q: What happens if a home owner doesn’t pay, will trash just pile up on the curb?
A: El Segundo Municipal Code prohibits Littering the streets – (ESMC § 5-3-2: LITTERING STREETS) 5-3-2: LITTERING STREETS: Garbage Or Rubbish Deposits: No person shall place or deposit, or leave or abandon, or cause to be placed or deposited, or left or abandoned, in any public street, road, avenue, alley, highway or other public place within the City, any garbage, rubbish, trash, sweepings, garden refuse, tree trimming, ashes, tin cans, junk or any other waste or refuse material or matter, the contents of any cuspidor or any putrid or objectionable substances of any kind. It is provided, however, that such items or materials may be temporarily deposited in course of lawful transport or other lawful handling thereof in accordance with any other rules or regulations which may exist or may hereafter be established with reference thereto.
Ultimately, if the property owner is non-responsive to staff’s attempts to have the issue properly addressed, the City will take care of it and back charge the property owner for the cost(s), and pursue collections as provided by the law.
Q: What rules and regulations does the City need to comply with?
A: There are several key State regulations with which the City must maintain compliance. In addition to AB 939, the State’s mandated landfill diversion legislation from 1990, new legislation adopted over the past five years has increased the requirements for landfill diversion, recycling, and managing organics.
SB 1383, the organic waste reduction legislation, affects Residential and Commercial Generators, and establishes a 50% disposal reduction of organics by 2020 and a 75% disposal reduction of organics by 2025. Under this new legislation, the City must provide residential and commercial organic waste collection services.
The legislation allows CalRecycle to issue penalties up to $10,000 per day if the City is not in compliance.
Q: Will there be Lifeline Assistance program?
A: Yes, Lifeline financial assistance will be available to those residential properties who qualify. Participants will receive a 50% reduction of the fee.
Q: Would the fee also help the City with compliance with the State regulations?
A: Yes. The Solid Waste Program is also funded from the General Fund, in addition to those City services noted above. Thus, the revenue from this fee will also be used to comply with CalRecycle’s requirements, such as providing education, outreach and monitoring; oversight of solid waste generators and haulers to ensure their compliance, and enforcement activities.
More Questions? Please contact Jasmine Allen at Public Works Dept. 310-524-2365 or firstname.lastname@example.org.