On November 17, the Macon-Bibb County Commission approved the expansion and standardization of recycling and yard waste pickup and realignment of garbage pickup services. Beginning January 4, 2016, the following services will be offered:
- Every home will have the opportunity to have curbside single stream recycling, something that many residents have been requesting for several years;
- Yard waste will be picked up from every home on a weekly basis, something that is not currently offered in all areas of the county but is desperately needed, especially during the spring and summer months; and
- All residential garbage collection will be managed by one organization, which improves efficiency, a promise of consolidation.
The fee for all residents of Macon-Bibb County will increase to $20 per month, and that will be reflected on the bill people will receive in January 2016. This decision came after several meetings with the Commission and community stakeholders, and is part of the Solid Waste and Materials Management Plan approved in June 2015. “This is a monumental step forward in our efforts to clean up our entire community and begin closing an outdated and environmentally dangerous landfill,” says Kevin Barkley, Director of the Solid Waste Department. “In 2014, we collected almost 2.4 million pounds of recyclable materials, and with more homes having much larger recycling containers, we expect that number to get much larger.”
“Our community deserves and has asked for more recycling, as well as quality waste and garbage services. In fact, they stated clearly when they voted for consolidation that they wanted a more efficient government that better meets their needs,” says Macon-Bibb County Mayor Robert Reichert. “With this decision, we stop kicking the can down the road on providing better services and closing the landfill.”
This realignment of services will allow Macon-Bibb County to offer single stream recycling to the entire county; it’s currently only offered in the former unincorporated area and to 2,000 homes in the former city. It will also allow Macon-Bibb to focus on other beautification efforts such as removing illegal dumps, picking up large debris like couches, and supporting neighborhood cleanups. With ADS picking up residential garbage, that material will now be taken to its landfill, and not the Macon-Bibb County landfill, which is mandated to close in fewer than five years.