Ward 3 Coun. Ann Iwanchuk is opposed to the Pay-As-You-Throw (PAYT) waste utility proposed for Saskatoon.
“I’m opposed to it for a number of reasons, but mainly because of the cost,” Iwanchuk told Global News on Wednesday.
“Currently someone who owns a home valued at $370,000 will pay $75 per year on their taxes toward garbage collection. With this new proposal, a minimum of $216 is what the cost will be with the smallest bin. If you keep the same bin you currently have, after three years, it’ll be over $400 per year,” she added.
“I’ve heard loud and clear from my residents they can’t afford that increase.”
The second reason Iwanchuk is opposed to the PAYT is mandatory composting.
“I’ve heard from a number of people who already compost that they can’t handle another bin.”
The proposed system means people will pay for garbage collection based on the size of their bin, not weight.
City administration is recommending a three-year, phased waste-diversion rate structure.
For the smallest bin (180 litres), the cost may be $18 per month with the price staying the same over the following three years, while for a medium bin (240L), the cost would be $19.70 per month in the first year, increasing to $22.10 monthly in the second year, and $24.50 per month in the third year.
A large bin (360L), may cost $22.80 per month in the first year, $29.50 per month in the second year and $36.20 per month in the third year.
The PAYT system is expected to go before Saskatoon city council for a final decision on Sept. 24. If approved, a garbage fee will be charged on your utility bills, like recycle is now.
“It’s not really a Pay-As-You-Throw in my opinion because that to me would be a tipping cost where you would only pay as you put your bin out… this is a monthly fee, that no matter where you live we pay the same amount,” Iwanchuk said.
The city hopes the PAYT system will divert three-quarters of what goes into the landfill, extending the life.
According to the city’s director of environmental and corporate initiatives, the costs to close the landfill and establish a new one is estimated to be $126 million.
“We have to remember that the recycle program was suppose to divert the garbage away too and save the landfill, but that hasn’t been happening. Just because we have this program, doesn’t mean the uptake will be there,” Iwanchuk said.
“If it is, it’ll save the landfill for about 20 years. But at that point in time the city will still have to build a new landfill.”
If the PAYT waste utility is passed by council on Sept. 24, it’s not expected to come into effect until 2019-20.
© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.