The Star-Herald

Trash and recycling changes: a recap

Now that Christmas is over, you can focus your attention on the truly important thing in life: trash.  

Of course, I am not serious, but there are some important changes in recycling and landfill operations that will take effect on January 1st as a result of the merger of the Presque Isle Landfill and Tri-Community Landfill into one entity that will be known as Aroostook Waste Solutions.  We have covered the details over the last three columns, and here I will summarize the basics.

Curbside collection of recyclables using blue bags ended Dec. 31. Blue bags will now be considered trash.  You will be able to continue recycling cardboard at curbside with your waste hauler. Cardboard is defined as the dark brown material that has the corrugated (wavy) middle.  Paperboard, aka boxboard, which includes cereal boxes and similar materials without the corrugated middle, will not be recycled in 2019.

Recycling will change into a drop-off program rather than curbside collection. Residents can deposit recyclables into igloo containers that will be located at the following locations: Presque Isle City Hall parking lot, Presque Isle Landfill, off Chapman Street near the courthouse, Mapleton Town Office, and the Washburn Town Office.

There are five igloos in a set, plus a dumpster for cardboard.  The red igloo is for milk jugs. The blue igloo is for colored plastics with the number 2 code on the bottom of the container.  Newspaper and telephone books go in the yellow igloo. Magazines and catalogs are accepted in the green igloo and metal cans go in the gray igloo.  Please rinse all containers clean and flatten, if possible, so that they take up less space in the igloo.

There have been manufacturing delays with the igloos.  It is anticipated that they will be in place by mid-January.  In the interim, you can deliver your recyclables to either the Presque Isle Recycling Center at 655 Missile Street or to the Presque Isle Landfill.

Residents who have curbside collection with a waste hauler will see no changes, except that you can recycle only cardboard at curbside.  If your waste hauler is Gil’s Sanitation or Star City Sanitation, everything will remain the same as it is now, including the price, whether you live in Presque Isle or another community.

Decal permits will now be required at the Presque Isle Landfill if you are disposing of trash, construction debris or demolition debris.  Permits are not required for any other items, which include recyclables, compostable waste, metal items, wood, tires or universal waste.

Decal permits are now available for sale at the Mapleton Town Office for residents of Mapleton, Chapman and Castle Hill.  Residents from all other communities and all businesses, regardless of residency, who utilize the Presque Isle Landfill must purchase decal permits on the second floor of City Hall.  Contact Lisa at 760-2712 for more information or if you have questions.

Permits cost either $200 or $225 each, depending on residency.  Additional permits for the same household or business with the same address cost $20 each.  There may be additional fees at the landfill depending on residency and the specific type of waste you have.  Additional information can be found on Aroostook Waste Solutions’ web site at www.aroostookwaste.com and at the City of Presque Isle web site, www.presqueislemaine.gov.  Fliers are also available at the landfill, the second floor at Presque Isle City Hall and the Mapleton Town Office.

If you are a senior citizen or generate very minimal amounts of trash, there are two alternatives that could save you some money.  Contact either Gil’s Sanitation (769-0711) or Star City Sanitation (764-1692) for more information. Both companies offer a lower rate of $25 per month for senior citizens for curbside collection at your house.  Both companies allow drop-off of bagged refuse at their places of business for $5 per bag. We strongly recommend that you contact both companies for details because there are some differences in what each waste hauler offers.

If you have any questions about waste disposal, recycling or purchasing landfill permits, please contact the City of Presque Isle at 760-2712 or Aroostook Waste Solutions at 473-7840.  

Dana H. Fowler, P.E., is public services director for the city of Presque Isle. He can be reached at 760-2707 or via email at dfowler@presqueisleme.us.

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