ROCKLAND, Maine — Rockland residents and businesses got a clearer picture Monday night on what they will likely be paying for trash disposal.
The Rockland City Council voted 3-2 to set trash disposal fees, with Councilors Elizabeth Dickerson and Louise MacLellan-Ruf casting the dissenting votes.
People who purchased $65 dump stickers as of Monday will not be affected by the change until next May 1. But as of Tuesday, July 1, the price for the annual dump sticker has jumped to $135. As of May 1, 2015, dump stickers will no longer be the way people pay for trash disposal.
While the fees were set, the council must still take a final vote on the pay-per-bag ordinance that will get rid of the sticker option beginning May 1, 2015 That was given preliminary approval last month and a final vote is scheduled for July 14.
The Monday night vote also approved fees for bags for people who choose not to purchase a dump sticker between now and May 1 next year. The fees are 75 cents for 12-gallon bags, $1.50 for 22-gallon bags, and $2.25 for 33-gallon bags. The bags are available for purchase at city hall or at the transfer station.
Commercial haulers will be charged $115 per ton through May 1, 2015, with the price then rising to $125 per ton. The current cost to commercial haulers is $110 per ton.
Solid Waste Director David St. Laurent said that he fills one of the 33-gallon bags every two weeks. That would translate to about $59 annually.
Rockland City Councils have considered pay-per-bag proposals since 2001. In 2006, the council enacted a pay-per-bag ordinance, but voters overturned that ordinance by a 959-479 vote after a petition drive. There have been no public comments voiced about such a repeal attempt this year.
The Mid-Coast Solid Waste Corp., based in Rockport, charges $2 for larger trash bags. The corporation serves Camden, Rockport, Hope and Lincolnville.
Residents of Thomaston, Owls Head and South Thomaston pay $5 every two years for a dump sticker to use the transfer station in Thomaston.