Here in DeKalb County, we have a lot to offer our residents, businesses and visitors. But, while DeKalb serves a kaleidoscopic of people and places, one aspect is shared by all: Everybody’s got to take out the trash.
DeKalb County has been a leader in sanitation collection, processing and disposal, but it’s been more than 10 years since it has raised collection rates to meet the demands of a booming population and challenging economic environment. This left the Sanitation Department’s
budget with a more than $6 million deficit in 2021.
The impact is not just financial. In one south DeKalb community, a once barely-noticeable landfill has grown into a literal mountain towering over nearby homes and emitting such a stench that nearby residents cannot enjoy sitting in their own yards.
The fee increase will, among other things, help the county offer relief to those beleaguered Ellenwood citizens and get back on good financial footing.
Increase will fund $111 million in capital needs
In a move to upgrade current facilities and services and its operations to keep up with demand, on July 1, DeKalb County will increase its rates for commercial trash collection.
The commercial, landfill and transfer station fee increases are vital for the county’s goal of committing $111 million to implement the Sanitation Department’s budget and returning it to a self-sustaining enterprise fund.
The fees will fund increased operational costs, new Sanitation Department staff positions, a pay raise for drivers, vehicle replacement costs and landfill expansion costs, among other expenditures.
Commercial sanitation fee changes will include:
● Commercial roll off container fees will essentially double: for example, the cost of a two-week, 10-yard container “fee per pull” will go from $120 to $226; a 40-yard container will increase from $480 to $902.
● Pay-per-load service will increase from $100 to $451 per load.
● Commercial front load dumpster fee will increase to a smaller extent. For example, a 6-yard dumpster on a once-weekly pickup currently costs $131 per month; that will increase to $195. The same dumpster on a five-time per week pickup, which currently costs $655, will rise to $975.
● Commercial roll-cart recycling container fees will rise $10 per container.
● Tipping fees at the Seminole Road Landfill will increase from $33 per ton to $95. Fees at the Central, East and North Transfer Stations will rise to $100 per ton.
Special collections, large tree sections, pet crematory fees also to rise
Special collection fees also will increase.
Items that must be called in for pickup, such as furniture, will go from a $50 minimum fee to $100. A load of waste will rise from a $100 minimum to $225.
Tree parts that are more than 3 inches in diameter will rise from a $50 minimum or $150 per load to a $200 minimum or $450 per load.
County residents can expect to pay to more to have a deceased pet cremated. For years DeKalb County has charged $5 to $10 per animal for that service; the new fee will be $100 per animal. While a steep increase, that’s still well below the average charged by private pet crematories, where fees range from $75 for small animals up to $299.
The Board of Commissioners has held the line on Sanitation Department fees for commercial and residential customers alike for more than 10 years, but with these carefully crafted increases the county can continue to offer the quality of service our citizens expect from us. And that’s not just trash talk!
We’re always happy to hear from you as we work to move DeKalb County forward. You can contact us at email@example.com