Falmouth trash, recycling changes take effect

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FALMOUTH — Residents will see changes to their curbside trash and recycling pick-ups beginning Wednesday, July 6.

Two “silver bullet” recycle bins will also be moved from their current locations to the transfer station.

Trash and recycling will now be picked up at the curb every week by Pine Tree Waste, which will utilize divided trucks to collect trash and recycling at the same time. The trucks will save time by making only one trip down each street.

The weekly pickups will now be conducted four days a week and many pickup days will change.

A color-coded street map of Falmouth that shows all the new pickup days is available on the town’s website under the Parks and Public Works page.

The Allen Avenue Extension to Bucknam Road area and residences along Longwoods Road will have pickup on Tuesdays; The Flats and the Foreside will have pickup on Wednesdays; Blackstrap and Hurricane roads over to Highland Lake will have pickup on Thursdays, and Gray, Falmouth, Winn and Woodville roads will all have pickups on Fridays.

When pickup is skipped due to holidays or weather, it will be made up on Saturday.

Residents can use their current trash and recycling bins, or any bins they would like, as long as they are small and manageable enough for a worker to lift. Stickers to designate which bins are for recycling are available at Town Hall.

At the same time as the town moves to weekly curbside pickup, it will eliminate the two silver bullet recycling containers at West Falmouth Crossing and the Bucknam Road fire station.

More than half the town’s recycling is collected at the silver bullets. But the town decided to eliminate them after a poll of users found a significant number of out-of-town residents use the containers. Last year, someone dumped a toxic liquid in the West Falmouth container.

“I think it should be done in stages, but the council decided not to do it that way,” said Town Councilor Bonny Rodden, liaison to the town’s Recycling and Energy Committee.

Rodden and Councilor Faith Varney have expressed concern that eliminating the silver bullets will reduce recycling. Falmouth has consistently had one of the highest recycling rates in the area.

“I’ve heard a lot of complaints from people on long private roads or older people who don’t want to or can’t haul the bins down to the end of their driveways,” Rodden said.

However, the changes are proposed to cut back on the time town staff must spend cleaning up the silver bullet areas and disposing of non-recyclable items dumped there.

The silver bullet containers will be moved to the transfer station, where they will only be available when the transfer station is open.

Transfer station hours will be extended after July 5. Hours will be Tuesday and Thursday noon to 4 p.m., Friday 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Returnable bottle donation drop-off is remaining at the West Falmouth Crossing, Bucknam Road and transfer station locations. Donations go to a variety of local causes, including the high school theater program and the Fire Department Auxiliary.

Emily Parkhurst can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or eparkhurst@theforecaster.net. Follow her on Twitter: @emilyparkhurst.

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