Landfill fees to increase despite concerns

By Andrew de Souza
April 5, 2011 - 6:50am Updated: April 5, 2011 - 7:56am

It looks like council will indeed increase fees for the city landfill next week.

 
2011
2010

Entry Fee
$7.50
$5.00

Per Tonne
$50
$42

Residential pickup rate
$13.60
$12.80

Multi-until residential
$13.60 (per unit)
$45 (entire building)

Users from outside NCSWMC
Double above rates
Same as internal users

At Monday night’s executive committee meeting, councillors debated the logic behind increasing user fees for the city’s landfill.

“I wonder if the downside of that increase would be a huge increase in dumping illegally in our community and outside the gates,” said Coun. Ted Zurakowski.

“We upped sewer, we’re upping garbage, we’re upping taxes,” he said.

“I just hope people do not go and through it in the bush and throw it somewhere and ruin our beautiful city.”

Despite their concerns, administration staff and other councillors defended the change.

“The price that has been put forward here seems reasonable and when you look at what other landfills are charging across the province it seems that it would be in line,” said Collin Innes, city public works director.

Coun. Atkinson said he was ok with the increase because the new bylaw also made outside users pay double the rate and eases the overall burden.

People needed to understand that the increase was necessary, Coun. Martin Ring said.

“It’s certainly important that people understand the costs involved with owning a landfill,” he said.

“We have to recover those costs. I’m sorry but that’s a reality and those costs aren’t going away.”

One concern was that the landfill should raise enough money to pay for upcoming capital costs, including an estimated $1 million required to construct a retaining wall that would prevent leakage from the landfill into groundwater.

City finance director Joe Day said that concern could be relaxed because the landfill was generating revenues with the intent of creating reserves.

In the end, council voted in favour of adopting the bylaw, which would increase the fees, but also lay out a few more fee structures for other materials coming into the landfill including propane tanks, construction materials and contaminated soil.

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