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The Heap

Brotherly Love for Pay As You Throw?

In the wake of declining tax revenues and a growing budget problem, the city of Philadelphia is considering adopting a "pay as you throw" financing mechanism for its garbage collection. According to radio station WHYY, the city could raise $106 million annually through such a program, and the average Philadelphia household would pay $260 in fees a year.

The radio station's Web site is asking readers to chime in with their views. Here are some quotes from a person supporting the plan:

My hard work, my tax dollars and the fact that my household only produces about 3/4 of a bag of garbage per week can stop subsidizing the guy down the street who seems to be running a small meat processing plant out of his basement.

And some quotes from someone who opposes it:

Trash pick-up is a service the city should provide to its residents for free. I’d like to think that our taxpayer dollars support this basic service. To me, core city services include fire, police, snow removal, and trash collection. Because of the budget crisis, the city has already scaled back its snow removal to primary and secondary streets only, which basically means the main roadways. As a result, our local side streets were a mess during the most recent snow storm.

What's your take on "pay as you throw"?