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L.A. Board of Public Works Approves RecycLA Settlement

The settlement grants millions of dollars in refunds to RecycLA customers and eliminates some of the fees associated with the program.

In June 2017, the city of Los Angeles launched RecycLA, a franchised waste and recycling program that includes zones assigned to Waste Management, Republic Services, Athens Services, Universal Waste Systems, CalMet Services, NASA Services and Ware Disposal. Shortly after its launch, residents began voicing concerns about the new program, stating there was a large increase in prices, uncollected trash and unreturned phone calls. And a group of business owners and housing providers took their concerns a step further by seeking signatures for a petition to roll back the commercial hauling ordinance and return to the use of independent collection services.

In an effort to resolve the program’s ongoing issues, the Los Angeles Board of Public Works (BPW) approved a new facility certification plan for RecycLA on October 29, 2018. That plan gave the Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation (LASAN) authority to conduct monthly inspections to assess safety, recycling and performance standards at any facility accepting material from RecycLA service providers.

Now, the city and the RecycLA haulers have agreed to a settlement that gives millions of dollars in refunds to customers and eliminates some of the fees associated with the program. BPW approved the changes in the haulers’ 10-year contracts on February 15.

According to a Southern California Public Radio's laist report, the city's first-year cost of the refunds and waiver of some service charges will run about $9.1 million, and haulers agree to put up an equal amount.

Subsequent years' costs are expected to start at around $7 million for the city annually, rising as the amount of recycling increases, noted the report. It also added that while a 3.6 percent cost of living increase was applied to rates in January, the city and haulers agreed to delay an additional 3 percent price increase until 2020.

Los Angeles Times has more information:

The Los Angeles City Council has struck a deal with commercial trash haulers to eliminate some of the costly fees charged as part of RecycLA, Mayor Eric Garcetti's recycling program for businesses, condominium complexes and larger apartment buildings.

Under a settlement backed by Garcetti and the council, seven refuse companies would be barred from charging customers an extra $10.67 every time a trash truck driver uses a key or remote control to open a locked garage door before emptying a blue recycling bin.

The haulers also would no longer be allowed to impose an extra $26.68 “distance” charge each time a driver pulls a blue recycling bin more than 100 feet to the curb. A distance fee of $37.36, charged when a blue bin is moved more than 200 feet, also would be prohibited under the deal.

Read the full story here.

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