Village Trash District

Municipality: Upper Brookville
County: Nassau County
Population: Less than 5,000
Type: Village

2017 Local Government Achievement Award

Village Hall: (516) 624-7715

The village’s new Garbage Disposal District (GDD) is a unique variation on single hauler village trash collection. It was designed to lower the cost of collection, reduce taxes and improve property values over time, and improve the environment and quality of life in the village. It also significantly reduces the cost of future road repaving. The GDD was patterned after a similar program in a nearby village adopted a few years earlier.

We had seven licensed haulers in the village. Pick-ups were very inefficient because the haulers skipped homes as they went from customer to customer. Some residents saw multiple trucks on their streets six days a week. The pickups were also noisy, the haulers damaged property and they did not recycle. The diesel fumes from seven haulers also polluted the air.

Improvements include increased recycling, fewer potholes, less property damage, improved safety, fewer trash pickups, fewer trash trucks, less congestion on roads, reduced collection noise, better overall control, and reduced diesel emissions.

Residents have the option to “opt out” of joining the GDD. Thereafter, residents may opt in or out (a) each year or (b) earlier if they sell their homes. If they don’t elect to opt out, they are automatically enrolled in the GDD. The GDD charges a flat rate for each home. The first year monthly rate is $43.95. Combined with a $1.05 administrative fee to cover setup costs. Assuming 80% of our residents join the GDD, the total savings should be over $280,000/year. Extending road life by 5 years could save the village roughly $1 million in road maintenance expense over the next 20 years.

The program cost $11,000 and there were approximately $8,000 in legal costs associated with writing and adopting the law, managing the bid process and later amending and filing the law to reflect the terms of the winning bid. We had to create billing software to administer the district, which cost approximately $2,500. There were also postage and printing costs associated with informing 550 residents. These costs will be recovered from the participants in their monthly fees.