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District rewards Squamish residents who throw away less trash

New utility rates for 2021 favour people who use small garbage totes
large tote
The large totes are set to cost you more.

Whether or not your utility fees increase this year will depend mainly on the size of your garbage tote.

All utilities will have the same rate next year, with the exception of residential pickups for medium and large garbage totes.

Residents with small garbage totes will not experience a rate increase.

The reason for this was because council wanted to encourage residents to reduce waste and save costs by moving to the smaller container size.

On Dec. 1, council voted unanimously in favour of granting three readings to a new fee structure that would make changes to landfill tipping fees and residential garbage collection.

The new bylaw has yet to be adopted, but this is a near-certainty at this point.

There's been a jump in rates for some residential garbage pickups, but no increases to fees for water and sewer.

"This year because of the required increase in utility rates for solid waste, we purposefully held the water and sewer rates at the same levels that they were last year," said Rolland Russell, the municipality's senior financial analyst.

"So although there was a fairly significant increase in garbage for residential, you'll see that the overall increase is a more modest 3.6% for a medium garbage tote and a slightly more aggressive 5.2% for a large garbage tote."

In the new year, residents can expect to pay $345, up from $295 in annual fees for the pickup of a medium garbage tote.

For large garbage totes, that number will increase to $540, up from $460.

Annual residential water rates and sewer rates will remain the same at $490 and $595, respectively.

Thus, for a household with a small tote, utility fees will remain unchanged at $1,285 for water, sewer and garbage collection combined.

Houses with medium or large totes will have their total utility fees jump to $1,430 and $1,625, respectively.

Contact the District of Squamish to exchange your tote going forward call: 604.892.5217.

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