PORTAGE | Delivery of the new 96-gallon trash and recycling toters is scheduled to begin this week.
It is the beginning of the end of the process to change the way the city picks up and processes residential trash.
Despite efforts to inform residents about the changes, Randy Reeder, assistant street department superintendent, and Mayor James Snyder are expecting a lot of questions.
"It will be monumental," said Snyder, adding that several city employees are being trained to answer residents' questions once the toters are delivered.
The city began the switch from the traditional trash and recycling pickup system to a more automated system last year. The goal is to reduce costs by increasing recycling, thus decreasing the amount of trash going to the landfill. Officials say the new system will reduce workers' compensation claims by reducing injuries to employees. It's also expected to cut workforce costs by eventually eliminating the need for three-man trash and recycling crews.
Reeder said it should take two to three weeks to deliver the toters. Each home will receive two.
The one with the black lid is for trash, and the second with the green lid is for recyclables. Residents can get a second toter for trash at an additional cost of $6 per month. A second toter for recyclables, if necessary, will also be available, for no charge.
In addition to changing receptacles, many residents will see changes in their trash pickup schedules. The new procedures will require trash pickup only four days per week, Reeder said. On the fifth day, employees will be assigned other tasks.
The city has mailed one flier to residents explaining the changes. Reeder said a packet of information will be delivered with the toters and a second flier will be mailed later this month. In addition, the city has set up a website, www.portage-recycles.com, to provide information and answer questions.
The information provided with the toters will include calendars informing residents of both new trash and recycling maps and calendars. While trash will be picked up every week, recyclables will be picked up every other week.