New Kerbside Waste Contract

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The City of Wagga Wagga has called for tenders for its new kerbside waste collection contract, set to commence in April 2018.

Details can be found by logging into the Tenderlink website

This exciting development is the next step towards introducing a new waste collection system that is efficient, cost effective, and environmentally sustainable.

If Wagga keeps putting waste into landfill at the current rate we will have to build a new $4M waste cell every four to five years, and if we keep that up we will run out of space at Gregadoo in just eighty years and future generations will have to foot the bill for a brand new waste management centre.

The biggest change in the proposed service is the introduction of a food organics and garden organics (FOGO) bin that will be picked up weekly and turned into compost.

Essentially this means any food scraps that used to go in the general waste bin will go in a larger 240L FOGO bin (green lid). An education program will roll out in the months leading up to the commencement of the new system to ensure residents understand what the changes are and what role they need to play.

The general waste bin will increase by 20L and will be picked up fortnightly. A bulky waste service will also be included in the new contract.

Expanded collection area

The proposed contract includes expanding the collection area to Kapooka, Uranquinty village, Cartwrights Hill, Lake Albert, Springvale and Brucedale Drive. The definitive collection area will not be determined until the contract is finalised, residents that will be included will be notified at this time.

Businesses

Current service arrangements of a weekly general waste collection and option for fortnightly recycling collection will remain with scope to include a FOGO collection service in the future. There will also be an option for a larger 360 recycling bin.

The proposed service will consist of the following for residential areas:

Kerbside waste collection bins

  • WEEKLY collection of 240L FOGO bin GREEN LID
  • FORTNIGHTLY collection of 140L waste bin RED LID
  • FORTNIGHTLY collection of 240L recycling bin YELLOW LID with option for a 360L bin
  • 7L kitchen caddy and compostable liners for food organics
  • Potential for annual pre-booked service for kerbside bulky goods/ hard waste collection

Proposed changes explained

What goes in a FOGO bin?

Message from the Mayor

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Timeline

1 April 2017 → Tenders open
26 May 2017 → Tenders close
August 2017 → New contract finalised and signed
April 2018 → New kerbside waste collection system begins

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This project was supported by the Environmental Trust as part of the NSW EPA’s Waste Less, Recycle More initiative, funded from the waste levy.

Frequently asked questions

The below answers refer to the proposed kerbside waste collection service, scheduled to commence in April 2018. Details will not be finalised until the contract is signed in August 2017 and are subject to change. If you are looking for information on the existing service call 1300 292 442 or go to the waste page: wagga.nsw.gov.au/waste

What will the new collection service be?

  • Weekly collection of 240L food and garden organics (FOGO) bin (green lid)
  • Fortnightly collection of 140L waste bin (red lid)
  • Fortnightly collection of 240L recycling bin (yellow lid) with option for a 360L bin
  • 7L kitchen caddy and compostable liner for food organics
  • Potential for annual pre-booked service for kerbside bulky goods/ hard waste collection

What are the main changes from the existing service?

  • Option for a 360L recycling bin instead of the standard 240L size
  • Increase in overall fortnightly collection capacity from 720L to 860L
  • Increase the waste bin (red lid) from 120L to 140L, to be collected fortnightly instead of weekly
  • Food organics will be disposed of with garden organics, a kitchen caddy and liners will be supplied to assist with sorting from general waste
  • Potential for the introduction of annual pre-booked service for kerbside bulky goods/hard waste collectionproposed changes web

My general waste bin is full every week, a fortnightly collection won’t be enough.

The general waste bin will increase from 120L to 140L. The overall fortnightly collection capacity will increase from 720L to 860L. An audit of Wagga bins in 2011 demonstrated that 60% of bin weight was made up of food organics. These food organics will now be placed in the 240L green lid bin, which will be picked up weekly, creating more space in your general waste bin. A larger 360 recycling bin will also be available on request at no additional cost.

I have children in nappies; my bin will smell after two weeks

A ‘Community Nappy Trial’ conducted by Lake Macquarie City Council showed that the odour of bins containing nappies at the end of a fortnight were no worse than the odour of regular garbage bins at the end of a week. Furthermore, the trial showed that odour does not significantly increase with time, nor with the amount of nappies in the in. There are a number of things you can do to decrease the odour from nappies in your bin:

  • If possible, tip the contents of the nappy down the toilet before disposing.
  • Wrap the nappy into itself using the tabs.
  • Seal nappies tightly in plastic bags (we suggest double bagging or scented bags) before placing in the garbage bin.
  • Store the garbage bin in the shade and out of direct sunlight if possible.
  • Make sure your garbage bin lid closes properly and there are no cracks in the bin sides. If your bin is broken or cracked, contact Council.
  • Consider using general odour neutralizing products in your bin, including cat litter, crystals or bicarbonate of soda.
  • Place some odour neutralising products in the foot of a stocking and hang it on the inside of the red lidded bin, tying the stocking to the bin lid handle.
  • Consider using modern cloth nappies.

If I buy compostable nappies can I put these in the FOGO bin?

This will depend on the processing system put in place by the successful contractor. More details will be provided.

What about bulky waste?

There is potential in the new contract for an annual pre-booked service for kerbside bulky goods/hard waste collection to be available for all residents within the kerbside collection area. Free Tip Days will no longer be scheduled.

Will we get new bins?

Residential customers will get new bins. The general waste bin will increase in size from 120L to 140L and will have a red lid. You will also get a new 240L recycling bin (yellow lid) unless you request a larger 360L bin, 240L food organics and garden organics bin (green lid), and kitchen caddy with compostable iners to help sort your food organics. Commercial customers will not receive new bins.

What will happen to the old bins?

They will be collected by the contractor and sold for recycling with proceeds returning to Council.

Can I keep my old bin?

No, they will be collected by the contractor on behalf of Council.

Can I opt out of any services?

No. All properties in the designated collection areas will receive the service and will be charged a minimum annual fee. You can purchase some additional services.

Can I get a bigger bin?

Yes. If you have a large family (seven or more people in a household) you can apply for a 240L general waste bin (red lid) at no additional cost. If you do not meet this criterion you can purchase a 240L bin at a yet to be determined cost. Anyone can request a larger (360L) recycling bin at no additional cost.

How do I apply for a 360L recycling bin?


This process is yet to be finalised. Details will be made available as a part of the education campaign after the contract has been finalised.

Can I pay to have my general waste (red lid) or recycling bin (yellow lid) picked up weekly?

No.

I run a business; will there be any changes to my service?

The current service featuring a general waste bin with an option to purchase a 240L recycling bin will remain in place. It is proposed to also make a large 360L recycling bin available. There is scope to include a food organics and garden organics (FOGO) collection service in the future. Commercial customers will not receive new bins at this time.

What does FOGO stand for?


Food organics and garden organics.

What can go in the FOGO bin?

FOGO is considered any food waste including fruit and vegetable scraps, processed food and leftovers from meals such as meat, fish, chicken, bread, egg, egg shells, dairy products, coffee grounds and tea bags. Garden waste can include grass clippings, flowers & herbs, small branches and leaves. Paper towel, compostable plates, and compostable bags can also be disposed of in the FOGO bin. An education program will roll out in the months leading up to the commencement of the new system to ensure residents understand what the changes are and what role they need to play.

fogo web

How will we separate food organics from general waste?

Every household will receive a 7L kitchen caddy and compostable liners for sorting food organics in their kitchen. These liners can be disposed of in the FOGO bin. Liners will be distributed on a regular basis by the contractor at a frequency that is yet to be determined.

What if I run out of liners before I get my new roll?

If you run out of liners before they are replenished by the contractor, additional liners can be purchased from Council’s Customer Service desk. No other bags can be used to bag food organics.

Can I use biodegradable bags in the kitchen caddy?

No. Only compostable bags provided by the contractor can be used. All other bags will be considered as contamination.

What will happen to the FOGO waste?

The collection contractor will own the FOGO waste and will process it for compost.

I already compost, what difference will it make to me?

The FOGO bin can take certain waste items that are not recommended for compost. These include meat scraps, bones, dairy products and whole citrus fruits and onions

What if I don’t want to sort my food organics separately?

All residents will be expected to follow the new guidelines. If the collector sees that your bins are contaminated with the wrong kind of material your bin will not be picked up and you will have a specified period of time to rectify the issue and request for the collector to come back a second time to empty it.

How much will it cost?

The cost will not be determined until the contract is finalised in August 2017. All land owners included in the collection area will be charged an annual fee in the rates notice. All of Council’s Fees and Charges are reviewed annually and placed on public exhibition.

Will any changes be made at the Gregadoo Waste Management Centre?

The Gregadoo Waste Management Centre will continue to operate as normal. Fees and charges will continue to be reviewed annually and placed on public exhibition before being adopted by Council.

Will any changes be made to the Rural Waste Management Centres?

No. All Rural Waste Management Centres will remain at the current level of service and will be included in a masterplan that is currently under development. Fees and charges will continue to be reviewed annually and placed on public exhibition before being adopted.

Will any areas that currently receive the collection service be removed from the collection area?

No.

Will Free Tip Days still exist?

No. A pre booked annual bulky waste pick up service will potentially be offered to residents within the collection area. There are a number of items that will continue to be free to dispose at any time at the Gregadoo Waste Management Centre. More information on the fees and charges page.

Why doesn’t Council collect the rubbish?

A high level financial analysis of the comparative approaches was recently performed by an external cost accountant and this demonstrated that an external contractor is the most efficient method.

Isn’t it cheaper to just keep putting it in landfill?

While the exact prices will not be known until tenders are received, there are a number of factors that make FOGO financially viable:

  • Airspace in the landfill cells at Gregadoo WMC is valued at $160-$190 per tonne but we only charge $87-$123 per tonne of waste disposal.
  • A reduction of the amount of FOGO waste going into landfill in turn means Council will have less ongoing liability related to the monitoring and maintenance of the landfill cells.
  • State Government may introduce a waste levy on landfill.
  • A carbon price may be reintroduced of which our landfill is liable.
  • Diverting FOGO waste is a more environmentally sustainable outcome for the community.

There are long-term cost savings associated with introducing a FOGO service as it reduces waste to landfill and prolongs the life of existing waste cells at Gregadoo Waste Management Centre. Current estimates for a new waste cell is more than $4M and would need to be constructed every four to five years based on the amount of waste currently going to landfill.

Based on the current level of waste going to landfill, the Gregadoo Waste Management Centre has about 80 years of remaining landfill life.

I don’t want a kerbside waste collection service; do I still have to pay for it?


Yes. All households within the collection area will be charged an annual fee on their rates notice.

Is Wagga the first Council to make the change to a FOGO collection?


No. 27 Councils in NSW have already adopted a FOGO system with another five set to implement in the coming year.

Which villages or new areas will receive a kerbside collection service?

Ladysmith, Oura, Tarcutta and Mangoplah already have a kerbside collection service and this will remain under the new contract. The tender also includes expanding the service to Lake Albert, Springvale, Uranquinty village, Cartwrights Hill, Brucedale Drive and Kapooka. The definitive collection area will not be determined until the contract is finalised, residents that will be included will be notified at this time.

Why hasn’t my village been included as a new collection area?

Council completed an extensive consultation campaign 2015 to gauge support for a collection service in new areas. There are also logistical challenges in servicing some areas.

I already have an arrangement where I have an additional bin or assistance with putting it on the kerb, will this continue?

Yes. Council has a database of these services, which will be rolled into the new contract.

Do I get to have a say in the outcome?


Council ran an extensive engagement campaign in 2015 where 4500 households completed a survey. This information has been used to inform the new contract. The process is now at the tender stage.

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