Natick, Massachusetts, a town with about 33,000 residents, used to have a lot of trash. After facing pressure from regional budget cuts, the town was forced to reevaluate its public programs. One such program was the city’s waste collection service.
“Our journey has largely been influenced by pay-as-you throw (PAYT),” said Jillian Wilson-Martin, sustainability coordinator for Natick and speaker in the Pay-as-You Throw Best Management Practices and Success Programs webinar, which took place July 26 and was coordinated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Sustainable Materials Management Web Academy.
According to the EPA, Washington, typical waste collection programs charge residents fixed fees or property taxes regardless of the amount of materials they throw away. In PAYT programs, according to the EPA’s website, “Residents are charged for the collection of municipal solid waste (MSW)—ordinary household trash—based on the amount they throw away.”
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