Trash/Recycling Pick-Up Delayed A Day By Holiday; Weekly Yard Waste Collection Starts Oct. 25

Photo: Put your carts out a day later than usual

Whether it was once Columbus Day or, now, Indigenous Peoples’ Day, the holiday on the second Monday of October causes trash and recycling pickup to be pushed back by one day through town. So in the collection universe, Tuesday is actually Monday so don’t be surprised when you go out to collect your carts only to find them still filled.

With gardens shutting down and flower beds begin laid to rest, residents will still need to hold off placing their yard waste for curb side collection other than on the designated recycling day.

Weekly fall yard waste collection begins Oct. 25, and ends on Dec. 9.

And what exactly is yard waste? According to Belmont’s Department of Public Works, it’s leaves, twigs, grass, weeds, flowers, plants, hedge and shrubs prunings that are one inch or less in diameter and other easily raked yard waste. No tree limbs or branches greater than one inch in diameter.
NOT ALLOWED are food scraps, animal waste, trash of any kind, soil or plastic bags.

Just a reminder, yard waste must be placed in 30 gallon biodegradable paper bags or barrels marked with yard waste stickers. Close the bags by folding over; do not use staples or tape. Yard waste should be put out by 7 a.m. on collection days.

Saturday Trash Collection In Parks, Business Centers Approved By Select Board

Photo: Barrels in Belmont playgrounds and park will get add attention on weekends

With money “saved” in the Department of Public Works budget and a few tweeks to the pickup schedule, the Select Board approved a plan which they expect will make Belmont’s public spaces a bit more tidy.

At its Monday, Oct. 4 meeting, the board heard from town officials on a new initiative to reinstate weekend trash collection in Belmont’s business centers and public parks and playgrounds after residents this summer pointed to a ever increasing amount of garbage and waste overwhelming recepticals and sites near town eateries.

John Marshall, assistant town adminstrator and director of recreation, told the board that while bringing back Saturday collection does come at a cost – estimated at $10,000 a year – a funding source was identified that will allow the weekend collection to take place through fiscal year 2022.

“Luckily we had some [DPW] positions that took a little longer to fill … which opened up some salary items that we can use for the overtime to cover the weekend trash pickup,” said Marshall.

The new Saturday collection of the business centers by the DPW crew will begin around 4:30 p.m. while a Recreation Department truck will pickup at town parks and playgrounds starting between 3 p.m. to 4 p.m., said Assistant DPW Director and Highway Division Manager Michael Santoro.

Santoro told the board the collection times during the week in the business centers, including Bemont Center and Waverley Square, “have been tweeked a bit more” to provide greater coverage over the time leading and following the weekend when a majority of the trash complants occur.

On Fridays, the town’s trash hauler, Waste Management, will make collections after they service the town schools as they exit Belmont sometime after 2:30 p.m. On Mondays, Waste Management trucks will start the day collecting at Belmont Center when they arrive in the morning around 7 a.m. Santoro said DPW staff will also monitor the pickup sites during the week.

While funding is secured for the current fiscal year, “we’ll have to go back to the drawing board for funding in ’23. That will now be part of the budget process,” said Marshall.

Bag Your Trash To Help Out Those Who Take It Away

Photo: Waste Management truck

Washing your hands, putting on a cloth mask and staying indoors; those are acts all people should be doing to protect themselves and others during this long pandemic.

Add to that list one more thing: Bag your trash.

That’s the advice coming from Waste Management, the town’s trash and recycling hauler.

According to the national collector, due to increased concerns for worker safety due to the COVID-190 coronavirus, residents are being asked to place all household trash into large trash bags before placing them into the black carts and taking them to the curb for collection. The company also asks that all bags are properly sealed to prevent contents from spilling out as it is placed into the trucks.

The company reminds all customers that latex and other gloves used to protect individuals from spreading the virus be placed in the trash; they do not belong in the blue recycling containers.

New Rules For Wintertime Trash/Recycling Pickup

Photo: Not the way to leave your trash. (Boston.gov)

As wintertime ice and snow begins to pile up on sidewalks and roadways, the Highway Division of the Belmont Department of Public Works want to inform homeowners and businesses of some simple rules that will allow for efficient removal of trash and recycling over the next few months.

  • During the winter if there is snow and/or large snowbanks please park on one side of the road. This will allow the trash and recycling trucks to maneuver streets quickly and not become blocked. The DPW has called the Belmont Police to certain addresses to assist with on street parking.
  • Do not placed carts on snowbanks.
  • Carts must have lids closed and placed in front of snowbanks.
  • The trucks can’t reach the cart if it is on or behind the snowbank. The carts can be placed on the street in front of snowbanks after plowing has ended. This means carts should be set out the morning of pick-up before 7 a.m.
  • Do not leave carts out overnight during a snow storm.

Got questions? Call the DPW at 617-993-2680.

New Trash/Recycling Carts Start Arriving Monday … And What To Do With The Old One

Photo: Belmont residents can expect to see their new “carts” this and next week.

They’re here!

For the next two weeks, residents will discover something left behind on trash day: the delivery of the long-awaited “carts” for automated garbage and recycling collection by Waste Management, Belmont’s new trash collector.

The pair of carts will be left curbside during the last week in June and the first week of July. Each cart will have a serial number corresponding to the resident’s address.

If residents are not home during the drop-off, make arrangements for a neighbor or friend to place the carts on your property.

This week will be the final one for curbside removal of unlimited “bulk” items – large items such as couches or mattresses. 

Overflow bags will be sold at:

  • Hollingsworth, 89 Trapelo Rd.                               
  • Hillside Garden/True Value, 280 Blanchard Rd.
  • DPW Office, 19 Moore St. (Homer Building) Some of these locations only accept cash or checks.

Residents living in townhouses at Hill Estates will have their recycling changed from Monday Blue to Wednesday Green. This change is for recycling only.

For residents who are on a Tuesday Green recycle collection schedule, check the list below to see if your collection has changed to Wednesday Green. This change is for trash and recycling.

Change trash and recycling from Tuesday to Wednesday: 

  • 60-144 Blanchard Road
  • 11-157 Bright Road
  • 3-16 Dana Road
  • 5-65 Gale Road
  • 4-68 Glenn Road
  • 9-21 Mannix Circle
  • 17-90 Richardson Road
  • 10-49 Sharpe Road
  • 2-96 Taylor Road
  • 3-336 Washington Street
  • 16-176 Watson Road

What to do with your old garbage barrels?

Residents can continue to use them for personal use. But if a homeowner wants the barrel taken away, according to DPW Assistant Director Mike Santoro, place a large note on the barrel(s) on the next trash day that reads something like: PLEASE TAKE THIS BARREL. If you don’t take advantage of this one time removal, just remember that barrels are considered a “bulky” item and residents must call DPW Office to schedule pick up by noon before the next regular trash day.

The 411 On The Town’s New Trash Collection System

Photo: A 64-gallon bin being lifted into an automated trash collecting truck.

Note: Below is a letter from the Belmont Department of Public Works with details on the new automated trash collection system approved by the Board of Selectmen.

At their meeting this past Monday, Sept. 25, the Board of Selectmen voted in favor for the Department of Public Works to obtain competitive bids for automated trash collection. This change in service will require residents to place their trash in the provided 64-gallon wheeled cart and set in front of their residence. After the RFP is put out in October and a hauler is chosen there will be information on more specific details. However at this time here are the known details: 

This change in service will require residents to place their trash in the provided 64-gallon wheeled cart and set in front of their residence. After the Request For Proposal is put out in October and a hauler is chosen there will be information on more specific details.

However at this time here are the known details: 

  • Only trash will have automated collection 
  • The Town will provide wheeled 64-gallon containers. There will be a consideration for residents that have concerns maneuvering their carts to the curb. DPW will set up a home evaluation to determine the best method to accommodate the resident. 
  • The option to buy an overflow bag will be available. 

The selectman also voted for the following curbside services to be bid on the next contract. All of the services will remain the same except for bulky items. Residents will now only be allowed one bulky item per week and it must be scheduled through the DPW Office. Residents are now doing this for CRT’s and appliances. 

  • One bulky item per week 
  • Every other week dual stream recycling collection 
  • CRT’s (televisions, computer monitors and laptops) 
  • Appliances 
  • Yard waste collection 

The Belmont DPW feels that the automated collection with 64-gallon carts will balance Belmont residents’ expectations between services, costs and environmental impacts. This will put the Town in a better position now and in the future. 

There will be additional detail information with more specific details in the months after the RFP is awarded. Any questions or suggestions, please contact Mary Beth Calnan/Belmont Recycling Coordinator at mcalnan@belmont-ma.gov or 617-993-2689.

Selectmen OK Automated Trash Collection, Pay As You Throw Set Aside For Now

Photo: Kim Slack speaking before the Board of Selectmen, DPW Director Jay Marcotte looking on.

Belmont residents will soon have their curbside trash picked up by an automated trash collection truck requiring each household to use a 65-gallon wheeled barrel to place their garbage after the Belmont Board of Selectmen voted 2 to 1 to back the recommendation of the Department of Public Works Director Jay Marcotte to make a move towards mechanization.

The decision came after nearly four hours of presentations, discussion and debate before approximately 70 residents in the Town Hall auditorium on Monday, Sept. 25. Marcotte will now create a request for proposal (RFP) for a five-year contract by the end of October which will allow the winning bidder to purchase new equipment and acquire the nearly 10,000 bins that will go to each household in Belmont.

While “there is no panacea” when it comes to waste collection, Marcotte told the board the automated system – which is fast becoming the industry standard – strikes “a happy medium” regarding cost and the reduction of trash the town will collect.

He noted that using the barrels with the automated collection trucks – which has a mechanical arm that grabs the cans and flips them into a collection area – is the “right-sized for a majority of similar municipalities.” He pointed to the reduction in the trash in towns such as Burington (24 percent), Wilmington (26 percent), Dracut (19 percent) and  Dedham (35 percent) who have recently turned to automation.

According to Marcotte, Belmont’s new collection program – which will begin in 2018 – is similar to the one operated by the town of Wakefield which began its automated system in 2014.

Marcotte said data the department has gathered indicates the 65-gallon bins will meet the capacity needs of three of four Belmont households.

In a compromise to residents and board members, the DPW will accommodate residents who find using a 65-gallon barrel to be unwieldy, difficult to move, or more than they need by providing a 35-gallon barrel as an alternative.

Adam Dash voted against the motion because it did not have a provision to research the viability of using 35-gallon bins rather than the bulkier one.

While many of the current curbside services will remain in place in the next contract – the town will continue a separate recycling pickup and yard waste collection – large “bulky” items such as mattresses and furniture will now be limited to one free removal a week.                                                                                           

While selecting a traditional pickup and haul collection system, the selectmen said they had not abandoned the Pay-As-You-Throw method from future discussion. The PAYT approach was one of the most hotly debated of the items discussed. A presentation by Kim Slack of Sustainable Belmont focused on the dual benefits of reducing trash while cutting the town’s carbon footprint by undertaking this program. 

PAYT is just that, requiring households to purchase biodegradable bags for between $1 and $2 a bag for trash collection. Slack said that nearly 40 percent of Bay State communities have undertaken this system and have seen trash reduced from 25 percent to 50 percent. 

“Why not encourage more recycling,” quired Slack, noting that Belmont’s rate has not budged from the current 22 percent of total recycling, compared to Arlington’s 30 percent.

But several residents spoke against PAYT, calling it a hidden tax on residents, many who approved a 1990 override that paid for the current system of unlimited curbside collection. 

“I’m suggesting this is an underhanded way of an override,” said former Selectman Stephen Rosales who said recycling rates could be increased with more education, rather than a regressive “tax.” 

At the end of the meeting, the selectmen suggested discussing in the next two years whether to implement the PAYT method with the automated system.

Trash/Recycling Delayed A Day by Patriots’ Day Holiday

Photo: Collection delayed a day.

The scheduled curb-side pickup of trash and recycling in Belmont will be pushed back a day due to the Patriots’ Day holiday, Monday, April 18.

As a result, those households, apartments and businesses who have their garbage cans and recycling bins emptied on Monday of this week will need to wait until tomorrow, Tuesday, to drag it to the street.

Trash/Recycling Delayed A Day by Patriots’ Day Holiday

Photo: Collection delayed a day.

The scheduled curb-side pickup of trash and recycling in Belmont will be pushed back a day due to the Patriots’ Day holiday, Monday, April 20.

As a result, those households, apartments and businesses who have their garbage cans and recycling bins emptied on Monday of this week will need to wait until tomorrow, Tuesday, to drag it to the street.

No Trash and Recycling Collection Tuesday due to Blizzard

You know Belmont is taking this storm seriously as for the first time in decades, a snow storm will halt curb-side trash collection. But only for one day.

“Due to the impending snow storm there will not be any trash or recycling collection on Tuesday, Jan. 27.  Trash and recycling collection will resume on Wednesday, Jan. 28.  Collection for all days remaining this week will be delayed one day.”