October 22, 2018 11:06 am

Saskatoon city councillors to debate Pay-As-You-Throw waste utility

WATCH ABOVE: Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark explains the debate over Pay-As-You-Throw waste utility as it is back before city council on Oct. 22.

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Saskatoon city councillors will be sorting through the issue of a Pay-As-You-Throw (PAYT) waste utility when they meet Monday afternoon.

The issue became a political hot potato at the Sept. 24 council meeting, and after several hours of debate was postponed until the next meeting.

Several councillors call it a major change, and want more information and clarification.

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READ MORE: Coun. Ann Iwanchuk opposes Pay-As-You-Throw waste utility

Ward 3 Coun. Ann Iwanchuk has stated she is opposed to PAYT due to the cost.

Iwanchuk said a property owner with a home valued at $370,000 currently pays $75 per year on their property taxes towards garbage collection.

She said under the PAYT proposal, the minimum cost for a small bin would be $216, rising to $400 per year in three years.

City administration is proposing a three-year phase-in for the waste utility, starting at $18 per month for a small bin with no cost change over the three years.

A medium bin would be $19.70 per month in the first year, rising to $24.50 per month in the third year, while large bins would be priced at $22.80 monthly in the first year, and $36.20 per month in the third year.

READ MORE: Saskatoon committee approves ‘Pay-As-You-Throw’ garbage pickup for council vote

Mayor Charlie Clark said the current system is broken and needs to be dealt with.

“We want to be responsible about our waste management, both financially and environmentally,” Clark said.

“There’s lots of implication of this decision, so I think council wants to make sure we get it right.”

That included deciding whether to implement a city-wide organic waste program.

“Fifty-eight per cent of what’s going into people’s black bins is organics material that does not need to go to the landfill,” Clark said.

The city has said if action isn’t taken to reduce the amount of waste currently going to the landfill, it would have to be closed and a new one opened at an estimated cost of $150 million.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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