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Trash conversation continues

By Will Grandbois
Sopris Sun Staff

While both Trustee Ben Bohmfalk and Mayor Dan Richardson had ideas for a relatively simple approach to waste hauling at the Jan. 9 meeting, the debate that has raged in Carbondale almost since the municipality got out of the business is far from over.

Bohmfalk initially proposed the possibility of simply adopting all or most of a plan Pitkin County is currently finalizing, which includes volumetric pricing, mandatory recycling service and reporting from haulers.

“I think that’s a really good step in the right direction,” he said, acknowledging that it would likely increase costs for users.

Trustee Marty Silverstein wasn’t happy about that — and didn’t think former trustee Katrina Byars would have been, either.

“Think about the little person,” he said. “Think about the working stiff.”

Richardson, for his part, floated the idea of tackling everything by increasing permit fees for the haulers, then offering rebates or credits for priorities like increased diversion, composting or bear proof containers.

“It’s such a radically different approach,” Bohmfalk noted.

Instead, he floated a third idea to shoot for — a single hauler request for proposal like the one already in place in River Valley Ranch.

“It gets complicated, but I do feel like that’s the gold standard,” he said.

Regardless, it became clear that no simple solution would be adopted in the time allotted. The topic will likely be tackled at a future work session.