The Commission approves measures to assist the financing of the transfer station | Daily news alerts
WEST – City council continues to look for ways to bring the transfer station closer to a financially self-sustaining operation.
At a workshop meeting on Monday, council agreed by consensus to implement a new permit or sticker program for residents of Westerly and Hopkinton. The stickers would cost $ 50 per household and would be issued annually.
The sticker program and other council-approved initiatives are to be formally adopted by city council as amendments to the municipal solid waste ordinance at a future council meeting. The proposed amendments would go to a public hearing before being formally adopted or rejected by the council.
The council also agreed to increase the cost of orange garbage bags issued by the city for use at the transfer station from $ 8 to $ 10 for 33 gallon bags and from $ 5 to $ 7 for bags of 15. gallons. The cost charged to waste haulers would drop from $ 115 per tonne to $ 120 per tonne for garbage picked up in city locations and from $ 120 per tonne to $ 125 per tonne for shipments including waste from outside from the city.
Council members also asked interim city manager Shawn Lacey to speak with city officials in Hopkinton about a proposal to increase Hopkinton’s annual payment for the use of the transfer station by $ 16,000. $ 45,000 for the current year and $ 90,000 per year for future years. Councilors also asked Mike Serra, deputy superintendent of the Department of Public Works, to recommend potential charges for recyclable items.
The council sees all the proposals as a way to reverse a trend of the transfer station, which is designated as a corporate fund, requiring an annual allocation from the municipal general fund rather than operating in balance or better on the basis of fees charged to users of the installation.
The Finance Council, during deliberations on municipal and corporate budgets last spring, asked the city council to study the financial performance of the transfer station, noting its increased reliance on funds from the budget of the city rather than a fee charged for the use of the facility to balance the facility’s annual budget. The transfer station is relying on $ 488,571 from the current year’s annual budget to balance its $ 2.96 million budget.
Councilor Suzanne Giorno has called for a drop in permit fees for Westerly residents, saying other proposals considered by council would reverse the need to balance the facility’s budget with general fund money, but other councilors said households in Westerly and Hopkinton would be billed $ 50 a year. would allow the transfer station to build up a surplus that could be used to pay for the replacement of equipment.
Councilor Caswell Cooke Jr. noted that the city’s other two corporate fund operations, water and sewer services, both regularly maintain a surplus.
Serra said it may be possible to reduce permit fees for western residents after a few years.