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NYC Waste Zone Bill Finalized Ahead of Possible October 30 Vote

NYC Waste Zone Bill Finalized Ahead of Possible October 30 Vote
The New York City Council is working to have the bill passed during an October 30 meeting.

The latest version of New York City’s commercial waste zone bill could be adopted by the City Council on October 30.

The updated bill advances what city officials call “a non-exclusive zoning model,” dividing the city into at least 20 zones in which a maximum of three waste companies can operate. It also creates incentives to switch to more sustainable vehicles and haul trash to more reputable waste transfer stations. There are also provisions to increase public safety training requirements for sanitation workers and authorize the City of New York Department of Sanitation to set a minimum rate waste haulers can charge customers.

City Council Member Antonio Reynoso told POLITICO the council is working on a timeline to have the bill passed at the October 30 meeting.

In an October 21 Crain’s New York letter to the editor, Kendall Christiansen, executive director of New Yorkers for Responsible Waste Management; Tom Grech, president and CEO of the Queens Chamber of Commerce; and Lisa Sorin, president and CEO of the Bronx Chamber of Commerce, claim “the amended version of Intro 1574 remains a deeply flawed scheme, even as the council tries to push it across the finish line this week—without public scrutiny.”

The letter goes on to say: “If adopted the day before Halloween, the outcome would be frightening—businesses will pay more, workers will lose their jobs and family-run carting companies will be driven out of business. The Sanitation Department commissioner would become a 'czar' of commercial waste, empowered to pick just a handful of companies to serve the entire city—a recipe for corruption.”

Read the full letter here.

POLITICO has more information:

An effort to fundamentally change how commercial waste is picked up and processed in New York City may be heading toward approval with newly drafted legislation that is set to be released Thursday.

The latest bill, details of which were described to POLITICO, represents an apparent deal between labor groups, some industry players, the City Council and the mayor’s office in a fight that has played out in the streets and the chambers of City Hall for six years. If passed, the measure represents the most significant reform of the city’s commercial waste industry since a city-led commission began removing organized crime from the industry in the 1990s.

Council Member Antonio Reynoso, chairman of the Committee on Sanitation and Solid Waste, told POLITICO the latest version includes several key changes from the original bill floated earlier this year. It advances what is known as a non-exclusive zoning model — dividing the city into sections in which a maximum of three waste companies can operate — and creates incentives to switch to more sustainable vehicles and haul trash to more reputable waste transfer stations. There are also provisions to increase public safety training requirements for sanitation workers and authorize the Department of Sanitation to set a minimum rate waste haulers can charge customers.

Read the full article here.

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