Report recommends Halifax increase commercial tipping fees for recyclables, organics

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Recyclables are shown at the Materials Recovery Facility in Bayers Lake in this 2018 file photo. (Eric Woolliscroft/CBC - image credit)
Recyclables are shown at the Materials Recovery Facility in Bayers Lake in this 2018 file photo. (Eric Woolliscroft/CBC - image credit)

A Halifax regional council staff report is recommending the city increase commercial tipping fees for recyclables and organics.

The staff report says the city's Materials Recovery Facility in Bayers Lake handles the recyclables collected from the city's residential curbside and condominium programs, as well as some commercial recyclables, such as blue bag material and some paper.

While deliveries below 50 kilograms have fees waived, the current commercial tip fee is $30 per tonne. The report recommends increasing that to $45 per tonne.

Residential and commercial organic materials are taken to composting facilities in Ragged Lake and Burnside. The commercial tip fee is $75 per tonne, but will increase to $90 if council approves the bump.

The report notes these rates are cheaper than the city's tip rate for landfill disposal, which is $115 per tonne at Otter Lake.

"Tip fees for both recycling and organics in HRM have historically provided an incentive for commercial waste to be diverted from landfill disposal," the report says. "The proposed commercial tip fee changes would still make diversion the more cost-effective option and remain within the range of fees across the province."

Proposed increases could take effect July 1

The report notes tipping fees are usually paid by waste haulers who provide commercial collection services, who then pass along the costs to their customers.

City staff are proposing the fee changes take effect July 1 to allow haulers 45 to 60 days to notify their customers about pricing changes.

The city doesn't believe the increases will result in an increase in illegal dumping.

Council will vote on the matter Tuesday.

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